Chicago Star Scholarship Apply Today Now partnered with the Big Shoulders Fund

Become a Star Scholar and Earn Your College Education Tuition-Free

High school seniors graduating from a Big Shoulders Fund partnered school may be able to pursue a degree or certificate at City Colleges of Chicago at no cost—free tuition and books.

Who Is Eligible for this Program?
City Colleges will provide this free college opportunity for high school seniors graduating from one of the following Big Shoulders Fund partnered schools:

  • Christ The King Jesuit College Preparatory School
  • Cristo Rey Jesuit High School
  • De La Salle Institute
  • DePaul College Prep
  • Holy Trinity High School
  • Josephinum Academy of the Sacred Heart
  • Leo High School
  • Mount Carmel High School
  • Our Lady of Tepeyac High School
  • St Francis de Sales High School
  • Rita of Cascia High School
Read Star Scholar Student Success Stories

Star Scholarship Qualifications:

  • Graduates with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Resides in Chicago
  • Enrolls in one of the City Colleges’ academic pathways
  • Lives in a household earning no more than $50,000 annually
  •  Earns either: a score of 17 or higher on the English and math ACT, or a score of 460 or higher on the English SAT and 440 or higher on the math SAT, or tests
  • “Completion Ready” through the CCC placement exam.
  • The best score from any of these components (ACT, SAT, or CCC placement exam) will be used to qualify the student.

This includes undocumented and international students.

How to Apply

  • Apply to City Colleges
    Apply online as a credit-seeking student at

  • Log on to your student portal at and complete the Star Scholarship application.
    Go to Financial Aid > Star Scholarship Application

  • Send a Copy of Your Transcripts
    Have your high school principal or counselor send a copy of your transcript and ACT/SAT scores to

Frequently Asked Questions

Big Shoulders Star Scholars can learn more by reviewing these frequently asked questions.

Star Scholarship / Big Shoulders FAQ

Transfer Partnerships

STAR Scholarship recipients have the opportunity to begin working with 4-year universities while still at CCC.

Star Scholar Transfer Partners

About the Big Shoulders Fund

Inspired by Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, Big Shoulders Fund was founded by a group of business and civic leaders in 1986 to provide support to Catholic schools in the neediest areas of inner-city Chicago.

For more than twenty-eight years, Big Shoulders Fund has helped Chicago’s children in need achieve their dreams through access to a quality, values-based education. We accomplish this by investing more than $20 million annually in scholarship support and academic enrichment for students, operational improvements for schools, leadership development programs for the next generation of school leaders, and academic programs and professional development for teachers.

Learn More

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