Making a Difference Because We Are


The Foundation's assistance to young men and women since 1962 has enabled many of them to make contributions to American society in a variety of fields, giving substance to Mrs. Harcourt's expectation that competence and creditable citizenship are within the grasp of motivated young people despite financial circumstance.

The concept, which endures to this day, is simply this: help candidates from poor backgrounds, and from underserved high schools go to college. 

"In contrast to most philanthropic organizations, the Alfred Harcourt Foundation is committed to supporting students from disadvantaged academic settings whose high school grades and SAT scores are average, not exceptional. However, as a result of the Foundation's financial support and active engagement with them, the majority of Harcourt scholars do not remain average for long."
– Linda Carlson, City College

Involved Every Step of the Way

The Alfred Harcourt Foundation prides itself on the personal connections it makes with each student. We pay close attention to our students. 

Every scholar receives an individual interview with our President, who follows their progress throughout his or her tenure in college. The Foundation strives to single out students who, via their Foundation application, show a certain spark or edge. The Foundation student is "someone who, given a chance, can overcome great difficulties and achieve", according to Peter Jovanovich, board member. 

In our view, institutions of higher education shortchange students from underserved backgrounds by allowing the struggling student to keep accreting more and more debt, while never really helping him or her get on track to graduate. Our American higher education system is not designed to intervene with students who are at risk. The Harcourt Foundation does intervene, offering help and guidance, additional tutoring and mentoring, with the understanding the money stops if progress isn't being made.