Rising Stars Annual Academic Scholarship Guidelines

Academic scholarships are based on three criteria:

  • A student’s commitment to academics
  • A student’s commitment to community
  • An assessment of a family’s financial picture including income, assets, family size and other factors.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Students must be active participants of the Rising Stars Basketball Program.
  • Students must take the appropriate entrance examination for their chosen school (e.g. TACHS test, SSAT, CHSEE, etc.) and receive scores that meet eligibility requirements.
  • Students must have a continuous minimum overall average of 85 across all core subject areas (English, History, Science and Math).
  • Students must have a record of excellent attendance and punctuality in current school. If there are extenuating circumstances, an explanation and appropriate documentation will be required.
  • Students must have exhibited dedication to personal development, academic growth and good citizenship and can present evidence of this by submitting a minimum of two references, one of which must be must be provided by a teacher, guidance counselor, or administrator at current school.
  • Parents/family must commit to contributing a small portion of tuition. Experience suggests that this helps create ownership in the child’s future and attributes to success of the partnership between Rising Stars and the family.

Rising Stars Academic Scholarship Fund does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religious affiliation, or ethnic origin. Further, the scholarship is available to students with disabilities who receive appropriate services in accordance with an Individualized Education Plan (“IEP”).

Academic Application Requirements

  • A personal narrative essay (not more than 500 words) using one of the following writing prompts:
    • Describe your family, home, or community and the aspects of it that have helped mold you into the person that you are today.
    • Discuss the importance of being part of a team and describe what you think it means to be a “winning team”.
    • Think about a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.
  • A copy of transcript for the current and previous academic year which shows all grades and attendance record.
  • A copy of the most recent Tax Form (as filed with the IRS for any wage-earning adult residing with the applicant(s). If you do not file with the IRS AND receive only non-taxable income then copies of your most recent YEAR-END Social Services statement (TANF, etc.) are required including food stamp documentation, budget letter, housing assistance documentation, and Social Security income statements showing TOTAL AMOUNTS received in the most recent fiscal year for ALL members of the household.
  • A minimum of two references one of which must be from a staff member at applicant’s current school. Please refer your letters of reference to: dan.gimpel@risingstarsinc.org
  • A scheduled interview with applicant and parent/guardian. Student will be asked to provide a portfolio of work (a folder containing best academic work) before their interview date so that interviewers have an opportunity to review the portfolio carefully. Each applicant should be prepared to speak in depth about the academic work in the portfolio.

Annual Academic Scholarship Renewal Requirement

The scholarship may not be renewed if any of the following requirements are not met each

  • Student must participate in a minimum of (1) extra-curricular activity at school annually.
  • Student will be expected to mentor a younger participant in the Rising Stars program throughout each athletic season. The mentoring program will be individually designed for each scholarship recipient.
  • Student must submit report cards after each marking period and must schedule at least three consultations per school year with scholarship sponsor.
  • Students are expected to be participants in Rising Stars Basketball Program as well as represent the Rising Stars values by hard work, honesty, leadership, and integrity.
  • Students must maintain excellent attendance and punctuality.

Tutoring Grants available to 7th & 8th grade students

Current Rising Stars Basketball players wishing to attend Catholic or private schools may be eligible for entrance exam tutoring.

  • Students who wish to attend any of the Catholic high schools operated by the New York Archdiocese or the Diocese of Brooklyn and Queens must do well on the TACHS exam (Test for Admission into Catholic High Schools).
  • Students who wish to apply for admission to Roman Catholic high schools in Long Island are required to take the Catholic High School Entrance Examination (CHSEE), formerly known as the CO-OP test.
  • Students who wish to apply for admission to independent schools are required to take the SSAT and any other assessments specific to the individual institution.

Therefore, preparation beginning in the seventh grade (or during the summer between the seventh and eighth grade) is highly recommended. A 7th grade student who shows evidence that he/she may be eligible for the Rising Stars Scholarship Fund is encouraged to apply for a tutoring grant to pay for entrance exam preparation. The cost of private tutoring and/or test-preparation courses will be provided. Students who are interested in applying for a tutoring grant must submit the application below.


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