Eric K.'s Story

"QuestBridge gave me the confidence and assurance that regardless of my financial background, I should dream big."

A top college was always in Eric Kim’s plans, but he wasn’t sure how he would get there. Then he found QuestBridge. As a junior in high school, Eric learned about QuestBridge through a friend who was applying to the National College Match at the time. Eric started a College Prep Scholars Program application without question. Unaware of all the program benefits, he submitted an application. “At the time of applying, I wish I researched more information on QuestBridge and the program details," Eric said. "I did not know that there was a plethora of opportunities that QuestBridge provided in terms essay coaching, Quest for Excellence Awards, and other awards.” Eric was selected as a College Prep Scholar and was awarded an invitation to the National College Admissions Conference in 2015 at Stanford University.

Before becoming a College Prep Scholar and attending the conference, Eric was unaware of his potential. “I honestly did not believe I met any of the academic requirements to attend a top college. However, QuestBridge gave me the confidence and assurance that regardless of my financial background, I should dream big.”

At the National College Admissions Conference, Eric was able to meet other students like him, admissions officers from his dream schools, and current QuestBridge Scholars who had once been in his shoes. “The National College Admissions Conference not only helped me throughout the application process, but it also helped my mother in understanding the bigger picture of what is expected from the students when applying to colleges,” Eric shared. Eric credits the conference for applying to schools that he otherwise would have never considered, including the institution he went on to attend, the University of Notre Dame. 

His experience at the conference fully prepared Eric to apply to college through the National College Match in his senior year of high school. He had the support he needed from both his family and his teachers to continue confidently in the college admissions process. They helped prepare him to apply by proofreading his essays and writing letters of recommendation for his National College Match application.

The schools that partner with QuestBridge and the mission they all work toward motivated Eric to dream big and apply to top colleges through the National College Match. “I had a sense of relief knowing that the colleges that partner with QuestBridge provide financial aid packages that meet 100% of demonstrated financial need,” Eric explained.

Eric was admitted to Notre Dame through their Early Action option after the Match. In college, Eric was active in his QuestBridge Scholars Network chapter. He served as the chapter’s president in 2017 and an intern at QuestBridge HQ in 2019. During his internship, he was instrumental in the planning and execution of QB25 — QuestBridge’s 25th anniversary celebration and conference. Eric graduated in the spring of 2020 with plans to launch his career in event planning.