2024-25 State Scholars Announced
Unless otherwise noted, links in this message are to corresponding pages at the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) website (isac.org).
ISAC is pleased to announce that nearly 16,700 qualified Illinois high school students have been designated as 2024-25 State Scholars. Information about the announcement process is below. You may either scroll through the remainder of this message, or click on the appropriate link(s) to go directly to a specific section:
|Public Announcement of Scholars
(Certificates of Achievement and Press Release)
|Illinois State Scholar Badges
|Appeals Due by January 31, 2024
Instructions for generating reports of the school's State Scholar Finalists and Non-Finalists in the SSP system are provided in the SSP Online Processing User Guide.
- Remember that ISAC does not post the names of Illinois State Scholar Finalists on its website, due to the differences in policies among high schools regarding publishing student information online.
- High schools may generate the "Finalists" report in the SSP system by following the instructions provided on pages 14-15 of the SSP Online Processing User Guide.
- High school staff members that do not have access to the SSP system should contact the principal to obtain a listing of State Scholar Finalists at their school.
- Certificates of Achievement are being mailed to high schools that did not opt to download and print their own certificates as part of the early announcement process.*
- As a reminder, and as explained in a September 26 e-Message, high schools that downloaded their own certificates will not receive the ISAC-printed Certificates of Achievements.
- Counselors may distribute the certificates according to the preference of each school.
- For those schools presenting the Certificates of Achievement to State Scholars during a future high school honors ceremony, counselors are reminded to keep the certificates in a location where they can be easily accessed when needed.
- A sample press release, which can further assist schools in announcing State Scholars, may be accessed via the State Scholar Finalists page that is located within the ISAC Gift Assistance Programs area.
* Reminder Regarding Certificates of Achievement for Future Years
High schools are reminded that – beginning with next year's State Scholar processing cycle (i.e., for Illinois students who will be college freshmen during the 2025-26 academic year) – ISAC will no longer print Certificates of Achievement documents. Rather, all high schools will need to print Certificates of Achievement for their State Scholars.
As part of the early announcement process, ISAC has been mailing individual congratulatory letters directly to State Scholars as they have been named, with the last batch of letters having been mailed in mid-November. You may view a sample of the congratulatory letter in the ISAC Gift Assistance Programs area of the website.
Included in the congratulatory letter is information regarding a digital Illinois State Scholar badge issued by ISAC. The badge can be displayed on a State Scholar's online profiles and social media accounts, and shared with high school counselors, prospective colleges, employers, family members and others. Scholars may access their badges by visiting the ISAC Student Portal and then following the on-screen prompts. Complete instructions are available via the ISAC website at isac.org/SSPbadge.
Validating a Badge
Those with whom a Scholar shares their badge may wish to validate its authenticity. In order for them to do so, the Scholar will need to provide either a link (URL) to the badge or the badge ID.
- If the link (URL) has been provided: click on the link, which will launch the Badge Verification screen. The badge ID will automatically be populated, so they only need to click on "Check Badge ID."
- To verify a badge without the link (URL): the person will need to access the State Scholar Program Badge area (located within the Toolbox section of the ISAC Student Portal), click on "Badge Verification," enter the Scholar's badge ID, and then click on "Check Badge ID."
A validated badge will display "Badge ID is valid for: (FIRST NAME) (LAST NAME)."
- Corrections to already-submitted data must be submitted as follows:
- Changes (for example, correcting the spelling of a name, or reporting that a student was designated as a State Scholar in error) must be submitted in writing to ISAC's School Services Department via a fax to 847.831.8549, via an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or via regular mail to our Deerfield address.
Counselors should carefully review the sixth-semester roster data they submitted to ISAC, in order to ensure there are no errors in the announcement of 2024-25 State Scholars. To assist in the review, details regarding the State Scholar Selection Process are provided within the ISAC Gift Assistance Programs area.
- If a high school counselor feels that a student should have been designated as a State Scholar and was not, ISAC must receive a letter of appeal from the student and/or high school on or before the appeal deadline.
- The deadline to submit 2024-25 State Scholar appeals is Wednesday, January 31, 2024.
- Details regarding the appeals process are provided on the Appeals page of the ISAC Gift Assistance Programs area.
- As you counsel students or parents with questions regarding the selection process, you may choose to share with them the student's GPA or class rank data that the high school submitted to ISAC, and explain how that information factors into the eligibility formula. An updated Formula Used to Determine State Scholar Eligibility resource may be accessed via the State Scholar Program page that is located within the Before College area of the Students & Parents section, under College and Career Exploration and Planning.
You are receiving this message because you registered for ISAC's e-Messaging service through one or more subscription groups for Counselors.
If you have any questions regarding this e-Message, please contact ISAC's School Services Department by calling toll free at 866.247.2172 or sending an e-mail message to email@example.com.