Beat the Odds – Minnesota Program

>>Beat the Odds – Minnesota Program
Beat the Odds – Minnesota Program2020-01-22T13:31:41-06:00

Beat the Odds Scholarship Program

Join us at our 29th Annual Beat the Odds Awards Celebration for an evening of inspiration honoring five extraordinary high school students who have overcome tremendous adversity in life to achieve academic excellence, demonstrate leadership in their communities, and continue their education.

This year’s theme, “New Chapters Waiting to Be Written,” speaks to how our BTO honorees have refused to accept the narrative that society has written for them.  They have taken the pen into their own hands and are working hard for opportunities that allow them to decide for themselves what their future will bring.

Beat the Odds Awards Celebration

Thursday, March 19, 2020

5:30-8:45 p.m,

James B. Woulfe Alumni Hall

University of St. Thomas



Since 1993, CDF-MN has awarded more than 300 scholarships to outstanding youth in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. The celebration raises funding needed to sustain the organization’s Leave No Child Behind® mission.

CDF-MN’s annual Beat the Odds celebration also helps raise awareness about the significant challenges facing Minnesota’s children and the need for continued investment and advocacy. The individual experiences and stories of the young people honored at the event inform CDF-MN’s ongoing efforts to shape policy and change the odds for all children. As CDF-MN’s only annual fundraiser, the event raises needed funding to sustain the organization’s ongoing efforts on behalf of all Minnesota children.


For consideration of Children’s Defense Fund-MN Beat the Odds scholarship, you must:

  1. Be a current high school senior who resides in or attends school in the broader Twin Cities Metro area. Diversity in geographic representation will be considered.
  2. Be on track to graduate by June 2020.
  3. Demonstrate academic achievement and have post-secondary or training goals at a college, university or other institution of learning (there is no GPA requirement), as well as potential for post-secondary success.
  4. Be available for meetings including photo shoots and interviews from November 2019 through March 2020 (Nominator will be responsible for helping coordinate transportation to required meetings).
  5. Have limited family and/or community support and/or limited income.
  6. Demonstrate commitment to your community and/or social justice.
  7. Write a personal statement, of no more than 750 typed words, that accomplishes the following:
    • Describes the major obstacles and challenges in your life and how you have overcome them;
    • Describes your past and current family, financial, educational and emotional support systems;
    • Describes how you have been able to achieve academic success or show marked improvement in academics despite your hardships;
    • Describes your commitment to serving others, for example, involvement in service clubs at school or community organizations or taking on major home and work responsibilities
  8. Complete and submit the Beat the Odds application with all requirements including nominator form and letter of recommendation by 11:59 PM Friday, September 27, 2019.
Apply Now

Additional Documents


For questions about applying for the Beat the Odds Scholarship, contact Beat the Odds Minnesota (

For questions about our Beat the Odds Scholarship Awards event, contact Yvonne Lerew (

You are leaving the CDF-MN site and being redirected to the National Childrens Defense Fund website.