Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley
(630) 896-7800

Scholarship FAQ

When will applications be available?
Applications for the 2018 Scholarship Program will be available starting November 20, 2017. The deadline to submit a completed application is Monday, February 5, 2018 by 4:00 PM CST.

Can I turn in my application late?
No, late applications will not be tolerated.

What are the primary eligibility requirements to receive a scholarship?
Students must attend an accredited institution of higher education on a full‑time basis while maintaining a 2.0 grade point average or higher. With few exceptions, students must have their permanent address located within the Community Foundation service area.

The Community Foundation Scholarship Program service area includes the school boundaries of:

Kane County portion of Central High School 301
Kane County portion of Sycamore High School 427
Kane County portion of Hinckley-Big Rock High School 429

Kendall County portion of Plainfield North High School 202
Kendall County portion of Minooka Community High School 111
Kendall County portion of Sandwich Community High School 430

All of St Charles North High School 303
All of St Charles East High School 303
All of Kaneland High School 302
All of Geneva High School 304
All of Batavia High School 101
All of West Aurora High School 129
All of East Aurora High School 131
All of Metea Valley High School 204
All of Waubonsie Valley High School 204
All of Plano High School 88
All of Oswego and Oswego East High Schools 308
All of Plainfield South High School 202
All of Yorkville High School 115
All of Newark Community High School 18

Can I get a paper copy of the application?
No, paper copies are not available. The application must be completed online.

Can I fix the application after I submit it?
No. Once your application is submitted, it is final. Please take your time and review your whole application before submitting. If you submit and realize you need to make a change, you can e-mail the Scholarship Team at and tell us of the change so we can change it for you.

How can I get back into my application?
You will be e-mailed a link and you will have 30 days to finish completing your application. If you lose the link or the 30 days has passed, you will have to start over. We cannot retrieve your link or application.

What e-mail should I use?
Use an e-mail that you will check quite often. This should not be a high school given e-mail address. You will lose your high school given e-mail address before we are done contacting you for the Scholarship Season.

How do I apply for a specific scholarship?
You don’t. When you apply for a scholarship through the CFFRV, you are applying for any and all scholarships. Our reviewers will look at your application, resumé, essay and financial need (if applicable) to determine scholarship recipients.

Do the transcripts need to be official?
No. Transcripts can be unofficial.

Current High School Students should not send transcripts – they only need to tell school personnel to release their grades to the CFFRV. The Scholarship Team will request grades from the various high schools.

Current College Freshman Students must submit their high school transcript complete with 8 semesters and their Fall 2017 Semester grades from college. Grades must include student name, college name, courses taken, hours, and GPA.

Current College Sophomores and Beyond must submit ALL college semester grades up to and including the Fall 2017 semester. Grades must include student name, college name, courses taken, hours, and GPA.

How do I get unofficial transcripts?
Log in to your school account and do one of the following:

  1. Print/Save page(s) as PDF

  2. Print the pages and scan them back into the computer

  3. Copy and paste the page(s) into a Word document

  4. Take screen shots

What does it mean to “release the grades to the CFFRV?”
This means the high school senior must tell their school it is okay for the CFFRV to receive their high school transcript. They do this by visiting their counselor or front desk. In February, the CFFRV will contact all high schools and request the grade transcripts of the applicants. THIS ONLY APPLIES TO CURRENT HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS.

What is the Update Form?
The Update Form is a last minute chance to update your college choice and major or field of study before the committee meets to award scholarships. This form is e-mailed to the applicants in the second week of April.

Can a counselor write a recommendation/evaluation?
Yes. Anyone who knows the student well (preferably not family) can write a recommendation/evaluation.

Can the applicant submit recommendation/evaluations from their teacher (or other)?
Yes. We prefer to have the recommendations/evaluations submitted by the recommender or evaluator, however, we will accept them from the applicant.

Do we have the option of having people write a letter of recommendation instead of filling out the evaluation form?
You can do any combination. Letters of recommendation or evaluations are accepted. You also can submit both. Please view the Application Supporting Documents for more information.

Did you receive my evaluations?
Please refer to the checklist located at

Where do I send my Student Aid Report [SAR]? Do you need both the FAFSA E-mail and the SAR?
We do not need both FAFSA and SAR. Just one or the other please. You can either forward your FAFSA e-mail with the subject line “FAFSA Confirmation Page E-mail” to or you can e-mail your SAR document to the same e-mail address.

You may also snail mail your SAR document to 111 W Downer Pl, Ste. 312, Aurora, IL 60506. If you would like to turn in your SAR document in person, you may do so at our Aurora location (address above – we are in the Old Second National Bank building) or our new Geneva office located at 127 S First St, Ste. 215, Geneva, IL 60134.

When will I be notified if I received a scholarship?
All applicants of the 2018 program will be notified by Friday, June 1, 2018.

How is the scholarship money distributed?
We send a check of the whole amount to the college/university with instructions to apply it to the student’s account – half for 1st semester and half for 2nd semester, or equally among trimesters. We also provide instructions that say this money can be applied to tuition and fees for enrollment or fees, books, supplies, or equipment required for courses of instruction. Beyond that, you will need to contact your school for further information on disbursement.

Thorium Action Group – Your checks come in 2 installments. You will get half of the money during the 1st semester, and then be reevaluated to obtain the 2nd half of your installment.

How do I obtain my scholarship money?
Your scholarship award for the coming academic year will be processed only after the following items are received in the Community Foundation office.

(1) The complete Scholarship Award Finalization Form.
(2) A “thank-you” note or card to be shared with the donor(s) of your scholarship who have made your award possible.

Once approved, a check will be mailed to the college you will be attending (in accordance with IRS regulations). Checks will be issued June-August. You will receive an e-mail informing you that your check has been sent to the school.

Will a scholarship or monetary grant from any source reduce the amount of my Community Foundation Scholarship in future years?
A reduction may be necessary if you receive a scholarship or other financial aid from one or more sources (such as a scholarship from a fraternal organization, from the college, from the General Assembly — or a cash grant), which the Community Foundation was not aware of at the time of its initial award to you.

Does an educational loan from any source (college, bank, NDSL, IGSL, service organization or individual) reduce the amount of my scholarship?
No. A loan has certain repayment requirements which you or your family are obligated to meet within a specified period of time. We, therefore, will not reduce your scholarship award because of your loans.

Will financial aid in the form of a work-study grant or employment opportunities at my college reduce the amount of my scholarship?
No. We encourage your efforts to help finance your education and we will not reduce your award for any of these reasons.

What criteria does the Community Foundation use to determine my eligibility for the continuation of my scholarship after the first year?

Traditional Scholarship
Your scholarship award is based on satisfactory scholastic performance and continued financial need. Therefore, at the end of each academic year, your scholarship award will be reevaluated, taking into consideration any changes in your academic progress or financial situation.

In the spring, you will receive a notice requesting the following items for use in the reevaluation process: (1) a brief essay highlighting your progress at school and any change in your goals from the previous year, (2) your grade transcripts, (3) your SAR for the next academic year, and (4) the reevaluation form included with the notice.

In order to receive a SAR from the Department of Education for the next academic year, you must file a FAFSA as soon as possible after October 1, 2016. The Community Foundation cannot reevaluate your scholarship award without this report!

Merit Scholarship
Your scholarship award is based on satisfactory scholastic performance. Therefore, at the end of each academic year, your scholarship award will be reevaluated, taking into consideration any changes in your academic progress.

In the spring, you will receive a notice requesting the following items for use in the reevaluation process: (1) a brief essay highlighting your progress at school and any change in your goals from the previous year, (2) your grade transcripts, and (3) the reevaluation form included with the notice.

Can you give the check to me instead of the school?
No. Our procedure of making the check payable to the school and sending it directly to the school was determined by our Board of Directors as a precautionary measure for the student. The student will have to pay income tax if we send the check directly to the student. Our Board has found this way to be the safest for the student.

Deadline Dates
Application – Monday, February 5, 2018
Transcripts – Monday, February 5, 2018 (for college students)*
*High School transcripts will be requested from schools on Monday, February 12, 2018 for high school students.
Evaluations – Monday, February 5, 2018
FAFSA/SAR – Monday, March 12, 2018
Update Form – Monday, April 16, 2018
Finalization Form or Reevaluation Form – Friday, June 29, 2018


Please feel free to contact our Scholarship Team at or (630) 896-7800 if you have further questions or concerns.

(630) 896-7800