The Shield

The Student News Site of Richwoods High School

The Shield

The Shield

Why the QuestBridge National College Match Might Be a Match for You


In the season of college applications, it is typical for younger high school students to begin wondering what their options are for applying to college. The QuestBridge National College Match is an application process that connects high-achieving, low-income students with the nation’s leading colleges. Finalists typically come from households earning less than $65,000 yearly and often are first-generation college students. Along with averaging a 3.92 GPA, a majority of finalists received an SAT score between 1280 and 1470.

Each year, more and more students learn about QuestBridge and submit an application. In 2020, 18,500 high school seniors applied to the National College Match program and 1,464 of those students received full-ride scholarships to some of the nation’s top colleges. For the most recent round of applications, 20,800 high school seniors applied to the Match program and 2,242 of those received full-ride scholarships. Two of our own Richwoods seniors were among this year’s scholarship recipients! Moises Delgado received a National College Match Scholarship to Washington University St. Louis, and I received a National College Match Scholarship to Stanford University.

The QuestBridge National College Match Scholarship goes through stages with the initial application being followed by the finalist round, and the lucky applicants receive their admissions offers! When applying to the Match program, QuestBridge themselves decide on who becomes a finalist based on financial necessity and academic achievement. After QuestBridge makes this decision, the finalists move on to rank up to 15 of the offered college partners including Yale, Columbia, MIT, and 49 other schools. Finalists rank colleges in the order they wish to attend the schools; this decision is binding, meaning if a school offers a finalist a scholarship, they must accept the admissions offer. After ranking, the applicants complete the supplemental applications for each college that they ranked, and the colleges review the applications. In the order that the finalist ranked their choice of school, the colleges are given the option to offer the student a full ride scholarship. Once a school offers a scholarship, the lower ranked schools are not permitted to offer the student admission.

As much hard work that goes into applying to the QuestBridge National College Match program, for the few students who receive full ride scholarships, the hard work is worth the reward. For finalists who don’t match with a school, they are given the opportunity to apply to the 52 college partners through a regular decision round, in essentially the same process as applicants through the Common Application or Coalition Application.

As one of the 2,242 people who received Match Scholarships, I believe that if you meet the income and achievement criteria of the QuestBridge National College Match program, it is definitely worth applying when your round of college applications rolls around.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Kamryn Ragains
Kamryn Ragains, Editor in Chief
Kamryn is a senior in the IB programme at Richwoods. She a Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Richwoods Shield Newspaper and enjoys baking, reading, and spending time with her friends and family in her free time. She works part-time at Le Bakery and hopes to go into a Pre-Med major after high school.

Comments (0)

All The Shield Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *