Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship

Hi there!

I’m planning on applying for the Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship. If you were a past CDB Scholar, could you please share things like your scores/states/ECs?


It’s far more holistic than college admissions (even for colleges that claim to view applications holistically). If you meet the minimum, go ahead and apply. You have absolutely nothing to lose. D had 1070 SAT, basically straight As [except math], played soccer, and was an astoundingly creative writer.

Thanks for the information @AboutTheSame!

Good luck to you, @purplereader.

Taking @AboutTheSame’s advice to mind, remember to focus on the ‘who’ of you and not the ‘what’ of your scores. They really want to see what you’re made of and what you bring to the table.

^^ Yep. The scores get you in the door; the application (nominating statement/teacher recommendations/whatever it is that makes you stand out) determines the finalists; and then the interviews are key. D and Betsy hit it off immediately (or so I heard), and, to this day, I still have no idea exactly what they talked about, but D felt that Betsy and Bonnie really knew her by the time they were through.

Good luck to anyone reading this thread. I’m obviously a big fan of CDB (and the entire IEA organization for that matter). Our family’s experiences are dated (D graduated from high school in 2009 and is now in grad school), but I;m happy to share what I know here or in PMs if that level of privacy makes anyone more comfortable.

I know two CDB scholars and they could not be more different, other than the fact that both are bright. One is very precocious in math, the other has a talent for visual arts. One is extroverted, the other is more introverted. One is male, the other is female. Their class and racial backgrounds differ. Yes, it’s a very small sample, but the takeaway point is that it is hard to generalize.

I agree with the advice that has already been given - put forward your best, authentic self and see what happens!

Good luck!

Thanks @Waiting2exhale!

I agree with all of you that being your true self is important.

My S got involved with CDB quite by accident. He was always taking classes and listening to lectures on YouTube. When our school decided to opt out of national testing, I had him take the Explorer test which had been recommended by a peer at work. (Her daughter had been involved with Duke TIP) . He was in 6th grade and scored perfectly and it was suggested he take the ACT or SAT. We opted for the ACT and he did quite well on that as well. The following year he wanted to try for CTY SET so he took the SAT and met the requirements. The SET team mentioned the CDB scholarship and decided to apply. We went to the CTY summer program and loved it and really wanted to go to boarding school. In August we found out he was accepted as a CDB scholar.

The key point throughout all of this is that when we filled out the application my S had read extensively, taken several online classes, participated in several study groups outside of school, was President of the FBLA, and had pushed our local school board to allow middle school kids to take high level math like Algebra 1 and 2 (by proving it could be done). During his tenure in the FBLA he had doubled membership, becoming larger than the Student Council. His team raised more money than ever before and several awards were won. He was tops in his class, but it was never about grades - but lifelong learning.

While scores get you noticed - I believe it was his constant pursuit of asking questions, and leading the kinds of discussions and changes in the school and community they stuck out as making him different. He doesn’t play an instrument nor does he really play competitive sports, nor is he that involved in arts - three ways children often stand out. Rather, he wants to bring people together to do great things, and his record of accomplishment and consistency of motivation and effort in helping other succeed backed up his application. The one comment I received back from the CDB was that my S was exceptional in his interview - something I never knew. I suspect in the end - if you make it to the final what counts is your child being uniquely interesting as a person - not what’s on paper.

@ChristmasDickens I just saw this but thank you! I really like how you emphasis that it’s not just about achievements, but your message and motivation.

Is this scholarship for family in needs or anyone could apply?

Any 7th grader can apply for CDB. There is a lot of information on their website and blog.