Columbia College Chicago Announces Recipients of the Chicagoland Transfer Award

PhotoJuan Vargas, transferring to Columbia from William Rainey Harper College, was awarded this year's full-tuition scholarship.
Eleven transfer students receive renewable scholarships totaling nearly $150,000 for upcoming academic year.

CHICAGO (July 24, 2020) — Columbia College Chicago recently announced the recipients of its Chicagoland Transfer Award. The award provides ten $12,000 scholarships and one full-tuition scholarship to students transferring from Chicago-area community colleges to Columbia.

This is the third year Columbia offered the merit-based scholarships, which require students to submit an essay and to have earned a 3.0 grade point average or greater. This year, nearly 100 students from 21 community colleges applied for the award.

"Columbia College Chicago is a dream school for many students attending Chicagoland community colleges," said Holly Herrera, associate provost for transfer initiatives and academic partnerships at Columbia. "The Chicagoland Transfer Award is just one way that we can make their dream more accessible."

This year's full-tuition scholarship was awarded to Juan Vargas, who is transferring to Columbia from William Rainey Harper College. At Columbia, Juan will fulfill his dream to become a storyteller by pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Computer Animation. He plans to use his role as a creative professional to amplify the voices of people who are unheard and marginalized within our society.

"The Chicagoland Transfer Award has given me the opportunity to continue to fight for my dreams. This award has made me realize that dreams do come true," Vargas said.

The following students each received renewable scholarships for $12,000:

For the 2019-20 academic year, Columbia enrolled 687 transfer students. Ninety percent of those students received an average of nearly $8,500 in institutional scholarships from Columbia. Transfer students also have access to additional aid, including Federal Pell grants and State of Illinois MAP grants.

As part of its enrollment strategy, Herrera says Columbia has a guaranteed admission agreement with seven community colleges. Four new agreements are in the works and will be added to the Columbia's roster in the near future. These partnerships offer a clear pathway toward enrollment and streamlining the transfer process.

"Columbia is dedicated to creating and cultivating robust partnerships with our community college peers," Herrera said. "One of the most salient indicators of a true transfer partnership is increasing access through scholarships. Congratulations to Juan and all recipients of the 2020 Chicagoland Transfer Award!"


Keisha Cowen
Senior Director of Campus Communications