Academic Success and Achievement Programs

21st Century Scholars Program


The 21st Century Scholars Support Program is an initiative designed to support, retain, and graduate 21st Century Scholars on the Campus of Indiana University Northwest.

The program focuses on four areas:

  • Academic Performance and Persistence
  • Student Engagement and Enrichment
  • Financial Literacy and Debt Management
  • Career Exploration and Preparation


The 21st Century Scholars Program was established in 1990 to ensure that income eligible 7th and 8th grade Hoosiers have access to Higher Education.  Students who enroll in the program and fulfill the Scholar Pledge are guaranteed up to four years of undergraduate tuition at any participating public College or University in Indiana.

Scholar's Pledge:

Scholars can earn up to four years of college tuition at an eligible Indiana college by keeping the Scholar Pledge. When students enroll in the 7th or 8th grade, they pledge to: Graduate with an Indiana High School Diploma from a state-accredited high school. Participate in a Scholar Success Program that helps students plan, prepare and pay for college success.Achieve a cumulative high school GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. Not use illegal drugs or alcohol, or commit a crime or delinquent act. Apply for admission to an eligible Indiana college or university as a high school senior. Apply on time for student financial aid (by March 10th of the student’s senior year of high school).

Contact Us  

Najeb Arifee


Hawthorn Hall, 448 

21st Century Scholars Support Specialist

My name is Najeb Arifee and I am your 21st Century ScholarCorp member at IU Northwest this upcoming academic school year. I was born and raised in Northwest Indiana and currently live in Crown Point, IN. I am a Merrillville High School Class of 2010 graduate and attend Indiana University where I am completing a Bachelor of Science in Biology. I am also a 21st Century Scholar.

My primary goal is to provide students with resources and academic support throughout the school year. I hope to establish strong relationships with students and provide an outlet where you feel welcome and comfortable getting the help you needs to maintain your academic performance and grow as a student. Throughout the year you can expect a variety of workshops, social events, community service projects, and other academic support to make your time at IU Northwest enjoyable and prosperous.

Having been in your position just a few years ago, I understand the stresses and concerns that can come with college and hope to serve your needs. Feel free to contact me or drop by my office during operating hours whether you need something or just to introduce yourself and meet me. I look forward to serving each and every one of you! 

College Requirements  

21st Century Scholars apart of the 2013-2014 cohort and beyond must complete 30 credit hours each academic year in order to receive the full scholarship award.

Completing at least 30 college credits each academic year is the best way to stay on track to graduate on time (in 4 years).

For more information, please visit the College Completion Requirements site.

    1. How will the Scholarship funds be distributed?

   Once accepted and enrolled full-time at an eligible institution, the 21st Century Scholarship will be disbursed directly to the college on behalf of the student. Money will NOT be paid directly to the student.

    2. Can I use the Scholarship if I am enrolled in college courses as a part-time student?

No. You must be enrolled as a full-time student.

    3. Where can I use my 21st Century Scholars Award?

Your 21st Century Scholars award can be used at an eligible public, private (independent), or proprietary school in Indiana. For a complete list of schools, please visit the Indiana Department of Education.

    4. What does the 21st Century Scholars Program cover?

The scholarship covers undergraduate tuition and regularly assessed fees at an approved public institution. The scholarship covers only a portion of the tuition and fees at a private (independent) school. At proprietary schools, the scholarship is the same as if the student were to attend Ivy Tech Community College. For schools which charge by the credit hour, the scholarship covers a maximum of 15 credit hours per term.
The scholarship does NOT cover the cost of books, room and board, parking fees, lab fees or any other fees assessed that are not assessed to ALL students.

    5. My award notice from my college shows the 21st Century Scholars Award as paying only a small portion of my tuition. Why?

The 21st Century Scholarship is a supplemental scholarship, meaning it is applied only after all other tuition-specific aid is applied. Moreover, the scholarship has maximum limits set by state law.

    6. Can I receive the Scholarship if I transfer or withdraw once I begin college?

Yes. You may transfer or withdraw once you begin college. However, you must file a FAFSA each and every year by the state deadline. Additionally, the 21st Century Scholarship must be used within eight (8) years after the date the student first becomes eligible for the scholarship.