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Students who graduate from CPS in 2017 or after with a 3.0 GPA who test completion-ready in math and English will be able to pursue an associate degree at City Colleges of Chicago at no cost - free tuition and books.

In order to receive the Star Scholarship, students must first fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students who are ineligible to file for financial aid must fill out the Certification of Ineligibility to File for Financial Aid instead.  This is because the Star Scholarship is a last dollar scholarship, which means that any federal aid will be applied to the student’s account before Star Scholarship funds are used.
•    To learn more about filling out a FAFSA, please visit If you need assistance, the Financial Aid Office at your college can help.
•    If you are not eligible to fill out a FAFSA, please fill out the Certification of Ineligibility to File for Financial Aid instead. Only Star applicants are able to access this form and will need to log in to the student portal to do so.

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Interested students should choose one of the links below. Please be prepared to provide an email address and CPS student ID for identification.                           
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The returns from a college education are high: On average, an associate degree generates nearly $500,000 more in additional lifetime earnings than a high school diploma. A bachelor degree brings another half a million dollars. By enrolling at City Colleges, students can save up to $40,000 compared to other local institutions.                                         
CCC's College to Careers program is designed to prepare Chicagoans for the more than 500,000 jobs coming to Chicago in seven key industries. CCC's partnerships with four-year colleges and universities also help prepare students for successful transfers if they wish to seek a bachelor degree or beyond.  
What does the scholarship cover?               
After application of federal and state financial aid, CCC will provide waivers for all tuition and books for three years or until the completion of an associate degree, whichever comes first.             

Who is eligible to benefit from this program?
​City Colleges​ will provide this free college opportunity for Chicago Public High School students who graduate in 2017​​ or later who meet three academic requirements:            

  1. Graduates from a CPS high school with a 3.0 or higher GPA
  2. Test scores indicating a student is "completion ready," meaning that even if she or he needs moderate work to get to college-level, the student's test scores indicates he or she can take developmental education courses, get to college-level work and earn an associate degree within three years of enrolling at City Colleges.  In order to be considered “completion ready,”an ACT score of 17 or better in English and math is required. If the student takes the SAT, required scores are 460 in writing and 440 in math (if SAT is taken before March 1, 2016, 410 in writing and 400 in math).
  3. Enrolls in one of CCC's structured, relevant pathways.

This includes undocumented students and students at CPS charter schools. City residency following high school graduation is not required to be eligible for the scholarship.                                          

How long is this scholarship good for?
CPS graduates will have three years to use the funds starting in the first fall semester of their CPS graduation.

Get a head start on college credit while in high school, for free
​Up to 4,000 CPS students who test college-ready their junior or senior year can take City Colleges classes while in high school, either in their own school or at one of the seven City Colleges This is done via City Colleges' dual enrollment program. These courses are free. Click here for more information on the dual credit/dual enrollment program.      

Where can I get more information?
Questions can be directed to​​​ or 773-COLLEGE.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​   ​​​  


Learn More

Printable Resources     

Star Scholarship Brochure​    ​