Grady Scholars

About Grady Scholars

Named for local trailblazer George Grady who served as Michigan’s first African American police chief starting in 1965, Grady Scholars is a new initiative to build student leaders among underrepresented groups and to provide them with a jumpstart on their academic and extracurricular goals. 

Twenty students will receive a $1,000 scholarship along with leadership training and one-on-one mentoring to support them through their first year of college. 

Grady Scholars will live on campus for free during the summer semester, during which time they will participate in the Leadership SMC program. They will have the opportunity to begin classes during the summer to get a jump start on their program requirements. 

Grady Scholars will receive assistance in applying for on-campus jobs and continued mentoring throughout their first year of college.

They may participate in recruitment for the next class of Grady Scholars, and a select number may have their scholarship renewed for their second year as they serve as mentors to the incoming class of Grady Scholars.


Applicants must:

  • Be a resident of Cass County
  • Be a member of an underrepresented student population
  • Have a high school GPA of 2.0 or higher
  • Complete the Grady Scholars Application Packet, including the essay on a leadership topic
  • Submit two letters of recommendation from community leaders (educators, ministers, public servants) using the Grady Scholars Reference Evaluation.