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Rochester City Scholars graduating

Rochester, N.Y. The Rochester City Scholars program, started in 2009 by Rochester Institute of Technology in order to send Rochester City School District students to college for free, is being hailed as victorious.

The first group of Rochester City Scholars is set to graduate from RIT in May.

Im confident I have the skillset needed to pursue my goals, ideally here in Rochester, said Randy McFadden, one of the scholars and soon to be graduate of RIT.

In 2010, McFadden was one of 27 students who qualified for a tuition free education at RIT.

We were worried about tuition costs. I wanted to get into the best school possible, McFadden said.

Tuition costs are where the program became a game changer, designed to help the district keep students motivated.

Were a tight group. I talk with them all the time. We still talk to each other and make sure were all on track, finish strong, said Karbara Maxey, another City Scholar success story.

I think with this first group, theyre the pioneers. They came in here with a vision, wanting to do better for themselves and their families, said Candice Baldwin, director of the multicultural center for academic success.

There will be 21 City Scholars graduating in May, all thanks to a program that helped level the college playing field.

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Washington Times