The Bandits Scholars program was established in 2009 by Dave Heller, owner of the Quad Cities River Bandits, to make a positive and sustainable difference throughout the Quad Cities. The innovative program today incorporates five area institutions of higher learning: Augustana College, Black Hawk College, Scott County & Muscatine County Community Colleges, and St. Ambrose University.
The Bandits Scholars program seeks to identify the area's best and brightest future leaders and give them the opportunity to complete a year of study with no tuition cost to themselves or their families. It also awards each Scholar a paid internship with the River Bandits. By enabling these students to pursue their academic passion, get real on the job experience, and make their future in the Quad Cities, they can become catalysts for the growth and improvement of our community.
The Bandit Scholars program honors the team's strong commitment to higher education and celebrates its belief in the critical role education and sports play both in developing well-rounded citizens and strengthening our community. The program, rooted in Heller's philosophy of "Learn, Earn and Return," recognizes the importance of sports, academics, charitable endeavors and love of the Quad Cities - what we describe as the four legs that support a strong table. The recipient of each scholarship must demonstrate excellence in all four of these areas while also demonstrating an ongoing commitment to hard work and an upbeat, positive attitude.
The deserving recipient of each scholarship will have excelled in the classroom, and also have been active in sports (perhaps but not necessarily as a player) and extracurricular activities at their school; have had an impressive history of helping others, even when no one is looking; have demonstrated leadership and compassion for those less fortunate; and have already made a positive impact in our community through his or her actions, activities and work experience. Each winner will also have shown a commitment to continue his or her work to make the Quad Cities a better place to live, work, play and raise a family.
Each scholarship is open to rising juniors in good standing at Augustana and St. Ambrose, and second year students in good standing at Black Hawk College and Eastern Iowa's Community Colleges. Applicants must reside in one of the following counties: Bureau, Henry, Mercer, Rock Island and Whiteside Counties, as well as northern Knox County (Galesburg and north) on the Illinois side, and Cedar, Dubuque, Jackson, Muscatine and Scott Counties on the Iowa side. The scholarships are non-renewable and only full-time students are eligible to apply. Non-U.S. citizens and children or grandchildren of employees or owners of the Quad Cities River Bandits, employees of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues (NAPBL) and employees of each of the recipient colleges and universities are ineligible.
During the summer paid internship, the student must receive 0-9 academic credits and complete academic assignments. The recipient will be selected by a committee of college or university administration and River Bandits' ownership and staff.
To be considered as candidate for the Bandit Scholars Program please see your academic counselor.