American Dream Fellowship Competition

Elmhurst University is committed to helping individuals achieve the American Dream.

Thank you to all of the students who participated in the fifth annual American Dream Fellowship Competition, a scholarship competition that supports the enrollment of first-generation college students. Stay tuned for details on next year’s competition as we get closer to the event.

View 2022 American Dream Fellowship first-place winner Alejandra Galvan’s video submission.

Meet the 2022 Winners


All first-year admitted students (freshmen) who are first-generation college students* are invited to participate in the competition, which will consist of two rounds:

Round One: Video Submission

All participants make a video (no more than three minutes long) on the topic: “How will Elmhurst University help you achieve your American Dream?”

Note: All Round One participants will automatically be invited for Round Two.

Round Two: Group Project and Awards Ceremony

For Round Two, students are invited to campus.

The Round Two competition consists of a group project for students, an opportunity to hear from a first-generation featured speaker, and a chance to meet other participants. Round Two concludes with an awards ceremony hosted by Elmhurst University President Troy D. VanAken, a first-generation college student himself.

  • FIRST PLACE: The winner receives a four-year, full-tuition scholarship.
  • SECOND PLACE: The winner receives a stipend to cover four years’ room and board.
  • ALL STUDENTS WHO COMPLETE BOTH ROUNDS OF THE COMPETITION will receive a $1,000 annual American Dream Fellowship Grant, which can be added to previously awarded merit scholarships and/or grant aid.

* “First-generation college students” means neither parent nor guardian has earned a bachelor’s degree. Students who plan to apply for the Niebuhr Service to Society Competition are not eligible to also apply for the American Dream Fellowship.

Jenny Bogda, M.S.Ed.

Associate Director of First-Year Admission
Office of Admission

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