March 25, 2011 — This weekend, 102 top high school seniors will vie for full scholarships to the University of Virginia as the Jefferson Scholars Foundation hosts its 31st annual Jefferson Scholars Selection Weekend. The scholarship finalists arrived Wednesday to participate in four days of seminars, examinations and interviews.
Selection is based upon demonstrated excellence and exceptional potential in the areas of leadership, scholarship and citizenship. This year's finalists emerged from a field of almost 1,200 nominees from 33 states, Washington, D.C., and countries all over the world.
During the weekend, the finalists write essays, take mathematics examinations and participate in seminars led by U.Va. faculty members. The Jefferson Scholars Selection Committee, comprising U.Va. alumni, faculty and administrators, will conduct individual interviews.
At the close of the weekend, approximately 30 finalists will be offered Jefferson Scholarships. They have until April 20 to accept.
"The Jefferson Scholars Foundation's mission is to benefit the University of Virginia by recognizing and rewarding excellence," James H. Wright, president of the Jefferson Scholars Foundation, said. "These young men and women embody excellence in leadership, scholarship and citizenship, and possess the potential to provide the next generation of leadership to the university, the nation and the world."
The foundation currently supports 117 undergraduate students.
"The work of the Jefferson Scholars Foundation would not be possible without the support of the University's alumni – not only financial support, but also their contributions of time and energy," Wright said. "This year, more than 700 dedicated alumni have devoted time to the Jefferson Scholars Foundation, including serving on the regional selection committees that picked the Jefferson Scholar finalists."