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The LEAD Scholars Program is for first-generation college students (students whose parents did not graduate from a 4-year college or university) focused on academic success, community engagement and vocational exploration.

This program is open to both first-year students and transfer students with the goal of supporting them throughout their college career.

LEAD Scholars

LEAD logo 2018


COVID-19 is having a significant impact on all of our lives. Santa Clara University has been in regular contact via email to inform us how campus will be impacted. To review this correspondence, please go to the SCU COVID-19 website. For a list of additional campus and community resources collected by LEAD, please go to our COVID-19 ResourcesThe LEAD Scholars Program staff is also here to support you via email, phone or video chat. If you need help with anything, please contact us: Erin Kimura-Walsh at; Andrea Jackson at; and Alma Llamas at


Thank you for your interest in the LEAD Scholars Program! The LEAD Scholars Program is a program for first-generation college students (students whose parents did not graduate from a 4-year college or university) focused on academic success and community engagement. The LEAD Scholars Program provides academic and vocational development opportunities, supportive advising, peer mentoring, and community building through a variety of courses, programs, and support networks. 

We hope that you’ll consider joining LEAD, as a prospective SCU student or a current SCU student


Thank you for going #allinforlead & #allinforscu! on SCU's Day of Giving. For the LEAD Scholars Program, we raised $15,749 from 158 gifts and were also able to unlock another $21,000 from our challenge for a grand total of $36,749! For the Cabrini Fund, we raised $3975 from 46 gifts that will give our undocumented students the tools they need to be successful at Santa Clara University. Thank you to all of the LEAD Scholars, families, alumni and friends who gave! 


LEAD HAS MOVED LOCATIONS!!! We are now located in Alameda Hall (in between RLC's Graham and Finn). The LEAD Commons is located downstairs in Alameda 106 (walk towards the Amazon lockers), and the LEAD Offices are located upstairs on the second floor in Alameda 201, 202, and 204.

LEAD Office/ Commons Map 2019LEAD Office and Commons Photo


National First-Generation Celebration!

National First-Generation College Celebration - Friday, November 8! 
This event, hosted by the Council for Opportunity in Education and the Center for First-Generation College Success was an opportunity to celebrate our first-generation college students, gain more information about their experiences, and explore how we can better support them. 
This year the LEAD Scholars Program hoested a few events to celebrate:

FirstGenDay2019Celebrate First Gen 2018

Please follow and tag us @sculeadscholars and/or use the hashtags #celebratefirstgen and #sculeadscholars
Check out an awesome press release done by SCU!

Congratulations to our class of 2019 Graduates!

Eoin Lyons - 1st LEAD Valedictorian 2019


One of our very own, Eoin Lyons, is officially the first LEAD Scholar to be named Santa Clara University's Valedictorian! We are extremely proud of all of our students and the community they create here at SCU.

Watch Eoin's speech here!






LEAD Collaborates with 'Empowered Students' to Provide Career Coaching


Dec. 11th, 2018

Santa Clara, CA -- Empowered Students has partnered with the LEAD Scholars on a pilot program to support 15 students. The Career Coaching program includes a four week online, a micro-learning experience that is 10 minutes a day, weekly group coaching calls via video chat, and access to a private LinkedIn group. The partnership will take place between the months of December, 2018 and March, 2019.

Through the Empowered Students’ career coaching program, LEAD Scholars will receive coaching that will assist them in landing life-altering business internships and jobs upon graduation.  In order to do so, Empowered Students will increase the knowledge of LEAD Scholars in the realms of:

Relationship Building Skills
Business Communication
Personal Branding
Business Networking
Professionalism & Confidence

Click below for more information on Empowered Students!

Empowered Students is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that empowers first-generation and low income students to land life-altering internships and jobs. Our mission is to empower first-generation and low-income college students with the skills, confidence, experiences, and networks needed to land life-altering internships and jobs upon graduation---which lead to meaningful careers, lives of impact, and positions of leadership. These outcomes radiate a positive ripple effect with family members, high school friends, and members in their hometown communities.



Thank you for your Day of Giving Support!

Day of Giving 2018

Thank you to everyone who supported LEAD during SCU's Annual Day of Giving!

On March 7th, 2019 there were 99 alumni, parents and friends donated $10,650 to support LEAD's Microgrant and Fellowships Program. The generous donations that are made help students with basic living and educational needs, and participation in high-impact co-curricular activities like unpaid internships, undergraduate research and study abroad. Check out the LEAD page here for more information and to possilby consider making a donation in the future!

Please considering making a gift to our Microgrant and Fellowships Program.


Congratulations to our IME Becas Scholarship Recipients!

Congratulations to our IME Becas Scholarship recipients: Divianna Navarro, Bernardo Quevedo and Fabiola Ruiz! We are incredibly grateful to the Mexican Consulate of San Jose which awarded us a fifth IME Becas Grant thus far! The purpose of this IME Beca is to provide financial assistance to students of Mexican origin in order to support educational opportunities.

Learn more about our recipients here


Congratulations to our 2018-2019 Koret Fellows!

With generous support from the Koret Foundation, the IME Becas Program through the Mexican Consulate, Parents Alliance and private donors, the LEAD Scholars Program awarded almost $90,000 in fellowships to 35 students to support participation in conferences, unpaid internships, study abroad and undergraduate research, summer courses, and immersion and other community-based learning travel. Click here to learn more about their experiences!

LEAD Event Calendar