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College of Education

Apple Core Initiative

The Apple Core Initiative is designed to recruit, enroll, and retain South Carolina high school students from historically underrepresented populations into the teacher education programs at the University of South Carolina to fill both a capacity and diversity void in South Carolina public schools.

Our Mission

To increase diversity among South Carolina’s teachers while also tackling the growing teacher shortage, the College of Education launched the Apple Core Initiative in 2018. This scholarship program recruits high school students from historically underrepresented populations into teacher education programs at the University of South Carolina.


Our Students

The program currently has 20 students- 10 freshmen and 10 sophomores. Eight of them are also first-generation college students.

Apple Core Initiative students live in the same residence hall and participate in regular workshops aimed at easing the transition into college life, creating a sense of community and helping them overcome any issues that may stand in the way of their success.


Student Experiences

Apple Core Initiative students participate in field studies to learn more about the culture and history of South Carolina, particularly African American history and culture.

During their second year in the program, students participate in a “Study Within” experience, travelling to a different region of the United States to experience and study its culture.

In the program’s third year, Apple Core Initiative students study abroad to observe teaching and learning in classroom settings outside of the United States. In their final year, Apple Core Initiative seniors put what they have learned throughout the program into practice as they conduct their required student teaching/internships.

Apple Core Initiative Students Receive:

  • A $2,500 annual scholarship plus a $500 travel reimbursement.
  • Training for the Praxis Core exam which all education students must pass to become certified teachers
  • Ongoing mentoring from faculty as well as current school administrators and teachers to better prepare them to land a great job after graduation
  • Culturally relevant experiences to help students gain a greater understanding and appreciation for diversity, culture and education in South Carolina and beyond
  • Training and engagement in STEM education

For full details on the application process including deadlines, please visit the College of Education's Scholarships page.


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