Since 2008, we have awarded 195 High Hopes Scholarships totaling more than $3.1 million to Berkeley high school students attending colleges and universities throughout California and across the United States.  All students work with our college success advisors and a mentor from the Berkeley community to help them navigate the demands and challenges of college.

Our students are a diverse and impressive group.  They represent the many and varied ethnic and racial groups in Berkeley.  Many are the first in their families to attend college and many are recent immigrants to the United States.  They come from single-parent families and foster homes.  They have had to deal with illness, poverty, unemployment and family dysfunction.  Despite these challenges, they have excelled in school and are leaders in their communities.  They are active in church and school groups, charitable activities and sports.  Most of all, they show great promise and an overwhelming sense of hope for the future.  They inspire all of us to reach beyond our circumstances and strive to be the best at whatever we do.

Meet our 2017 High Hopes Scholars



1) High Hopes Scholarships: Each year, 20+ four-year need-based scholarships ($4,000 per year) awarded to Berkeley public high school students who will begin attending a 4-year college full-time in the Fall.  Applicants must have a cumulative GPA over 2.5 in high school. Their high school work, including the courses they have taken and their extracurricular and outside activities, must demonstrate that they are ready for the challenge of college. These awards include individual mentoring and require recipients to be involved with BCF programs and events during their college years. High Hopes Scholars must remain enrolled full-time in college with a cumulative GPA over 2.25 to continue to receive these funds.

- The Berkeley High Class of 1951/BCF Scholarship is awarded to a student with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5

- The Berkeley Rotary scholarships are now part of the High Hopes Scholarship Program.

2) Promise Scholarships: Beginning in the Fall of 2017, BCF will be awarding need-based scholarships of $1,500 to Berkeley students attending Berkeley City College with the intention of transferring to a 4-year university. Students who successfully transfer will be eligible to apply to the High Hopes Scholarship Program and receive an additional $8,000 scholarship to assist with completing their bachelor's degree.

As part of its  emphasis on scholarships, the BCF works with college access programs such as Bridge, RISE, and the Y Scholars Program, that help Berkeley public school students as early as 6th grade begin to envision, qualify for, and attain college admission. Through these programs, we identify and encourage Berkeley students to meet the eligibility requirements for the scholarships we provide.