Community Scholars Bring New Perspectives

Scholarship program opens up a world of possibilities to North Texas’s underserved elite students.

This article by Caroline Collier ’98 (MLA ’17) is in the current issue of TCU Magazine.

Learning to play golf doesn’t often lead to an academic scholarship, but that’s what happened for Courtland MacQueenette ’16.

One afternoon in 2003, the then-10-year-old was caddying for his father on a course in Fort Worth. Long wait times forced a merger with the group ahead. Walking between holes, MacQueenette told the new acquaintances that his collegiate dream was to attend TCU.

One member of the golfing group was Darron Turner ’87 (EdD ’11), who was then an associate vice chancellor for student affairs and in charge of a new academic scholarship program. MacQueenette remembered that Turner told him, “If you work hard, there’s this program called Community Scholars that may open its doors for you.”

At the time, the first 12 Community Scholars, who enrolled in Fall 2000 with full academic scholarships, were midway through their four years at the university. All were high-achieving students from Fort Worth-area high schools with large minority student enrollments.

In the late 1990s, TCU made a university goal to increase the demographic diversity of its majority-white student body. To achieve that objective, the university courted the brightest students from several of Fort Worth’s minority-majority public high schools through the new scholarship program.

All of the inaugural class of scholars graduated, and 11 of them enrolled in postgraduate programs. The scholarship program’s first students transformed the university with their participation in campus life, such as establishing new student groups including the United Latino Association and the Asian and Asian-American sorority, Kappa Lambda Delta.

Read more in TCU Magazine.