Southeast Scholars | SKCTC

Southeast Scholars


Southeast Scholars is a FREE college bound program, designed to assist students in grades 7 through 12 to graduate from high school and pursue post-secondary education.  The Southeast Scholars Program is to educate and empower socioeconomic challenged students to have equal opportunity to higher education and to achieve their collegiate dreams. Upon graduation from high school, Scholars are provided financial assistance to cover full tuition, books, and other expenses at their first choice, Southeast Community College, within 15 months of graduating from high school 



Southeast Scholars (SES) started in 1998.  It was and is a scholarship program aimed at increasing the number of college-going students and reducing the number of dropouts in three Southeastern Kentucky counties – Bell, Harlan and Letcher.  It was launched by Southeast Community College.  SES serves Harlan, Bell and Letcher residents and targets students who will be first generation college graduates in their immediate families.  There were 16 students in the first graduating class, Saturday, April 25, 1998.



Southeast Scholars participants are selected in the 6th grade from Bell, Harlan, and Letcher Counties in Southeast Kentucky.  Selection is based on income and academic potential.  The selected students must meet the following criteria: (a)Income guidelines based on family size; (b)First generation college students of their immediate family; and (c)Submission of a written essay.  Our program staff works with local guidance counselors, family resource center directors, teachers, principals, and community leaders to assist in the application process and student recruitment.



As a SES student, you should keep in mind the goals of the program. 

They are:

  • To instill in SES students a positive attitude toward learning and postsecondary education.
  • To increase the students' abilities to relate to their peer groups by developing a sense of     
  • personal self-worth
  • To expose the students to new academic, social, and cultural learning experiences.
  • To provide, when necessary, academic assistance to each individual student.
  • To help students increase their understanding of - and ability to cope with - their environment.



Our mission is to identify “at-risk” and “first generation” college students in Harlan, Letcher, and Bell Counties in the 6th grade and begin facilitation in the 7th grade.  We will provide enrichment and intervention programming to assist our students in successfully completing a curriculum of academic and life skills.  These combined components will ensure a smooth transition from high school to college.  Upon completion of high school and the Southeast Scholars program, only Southeast Scholars students will become eligible for guaranteed tuition and books for an        Associate’s Degree at Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College. Southeast KCTCS must be the students’ first choice of college enrollment within 15 months of graduating high school. 



Paul Bryant

Director – Southeast Scholars

100 College Road

Middlesboro, KY 40965

Phone: (606) 248-2001

Email -


Jennifer Cornell

Coordinator – Southeast Scholars

100 College Road

Middlesboro, KY 40965

Phone: (606) 589-3061

Cell: (606) 671-1466

Email –