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Start Smarter at RCSJ: Scholarship Program Expands Opportunity in Gloucester County


​​​The Rowan College Foundation at Gloucester County, with assistance from the Rowan College of South Jersey (RCSJ) Board of Trustees, is expanding its Presidential Start Smart Scholarship program to provide even more opportunities for graduating high school seniors in Gloucester County.

Rising costs of higher education, unprecedented economic anxiety and an overwhelming sense of uncertainty in the face of COVID-19 has many Gloucester County students questioning their ability to enroll in college this fall. With RCSJ's low tuition rates and the Presidential Start Smart Scholarship, opportunity is still very much on the table.

“Now more than ever, students need our help to ensure that they have access to an affordable education," said Foundation Director, Cody Miller. “The Foundation Board is committed to investing in our students to ease the burden on families and to make sure that they have the tools to succeed. In these challenging times we must all come together to support one another, and the Foundation and College will continue to work hand in hand to help our students get through this crisis."

The Start Smart Scholarship initiative was created in 2012 to assist Gloucester County students who excel in high school but fall just under the minimum requirements for the state sponsored NJSTARS scholarship program. Start Smart provides qualified first-year students who rank just

under the top 15 percent of their graduating high school class with a $1,000 tuition award when enrolled in a full-time course of study on RCSJ's Gloucester campus.

Opportunity created by the Presidential Start Smart Scholarship was further expanded in 2015, when premier partner Rowan University embarked on a joint venture with RCSJ, offering a companion scholarship program – the Finish Smart Scholarship. Finish Smart extends an additional $1,000 tuition award to qualifying Start Smart recipients for use upon their transfer to Rowan University.

Now, the Rowan College Foundation at Gloucester County and the RCSJ Board of Trustees are pleased to announce an additional $100,000 infusion into the Start Smart program. This expansion will enable RCSJ to offer the scholarship to an additional 100 Gloucester County students and will allow students in the top 25 percent in their graduating high school class to receive the scholarship.

"As the world we live in has a new reality, it is more important than ever for everyone to work together and provide more opportunities for our students to achieve," remarked Foundation Chairperson, Les Vail. “The RCSJ Foundation is honored that we are in a position be able to add an additional 100 Start Smart Scholarships for the upcoming year."

Rowan College of South Jersey awards more than $850,000 in scholarships through its Foundations each year. To learn more about the Presidential Start Smart Scholarship and other scholarship opportunities, visit

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