South Carolina State Fair Opens Applications for 2024 College Scholarships and Expands Program Thanks to Support from Circle K

More than $500,000 in scholarship funds are available for high school seniors statewide now through March 15

Columbia, S.C. – February 1, 2024 – The South Carolina State Fair, a self-supporting 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, is delighted to announce the commencement of applications for its 27th annual Ride of Your Life Scholarship program. This initiative, which runs until March 15, 2024, distributes over $500,000 in college scholarships to high school seniors throughout South Carolina. Applications can be submitted online at

“At the South Carolina State Fair, we are committed to championing excellence within our state, beginning with the education of our young adults,” says Nancy Smith, general manager of the South Carolina State Fair. “Our mission is to play an active role in shaping the future of South Carolina through the invaluable gift of education.”

Since 1997, the S.C. State Fair has granted more than $5 million to South Carolina students through the Ride of Your Life Scholarship program, reflecting the fair’s dedication to community-focused initiatives.

Expanding Opportunities with Circle K Collaboration

The S.C. State Fair proudly announces an expansion of its scholarship program, made possible through a generous collaboration with Circle K stores and EMC Tickets. Circle K’s commitment to education and the community is evident through a $34,000 donation presented to the South Carolina State Fair on January 22, 2024. This donation allows the S.C. State Fair to award an additional three scholarships, increasing the total to 53 scholarships this year.

“It is our pleasure to contribute to the South Carolina State Fair’s scholarship program and provide opportunities for students to achieve their dreams,” says Lauren Conner, Circle K regional director of operations.

“EMC Tickets is proud to partner with Circle K and the South Carolina State Fair,” says Steve White, CEO of EMC Tickets. “This effort not only expands educational opportunities but underscores the positive impact that businesses and community events can have on shaping the future.”

Scholarship Details and Application

This year, $10,000 scholarships will be awarded to 53 high school seniors across South Carolina, paid out at $2,500 per year over four years. Students pursuing two-year degrees will receive $2,500 per year over two years. One of the 53 scholarships is exclusively designated for a Circle K employee or dependent.

The scholarship funds must be used at a South Carolina university, college, or institution and may cover tuition or other educational expenses such as on-campus housing, a computer, or textbooks. Scholarships are awarded based on academic and extracurricular achievement, communication skills, need, and completeness of the application. Recipients must maintain a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale and enroll in no less than 30 credit hours each academic year to receive funding for that year.

Prospective scholars and/or parents can learn more at or by contacting Betsy Cooper at or 803-799-3387, ext. 110. Scholarship applications must be completed online at by March 15, 2024. Scholarship award recipients will be notified of their status in mid-May.

This year’s S.C. State Fair will take place from October 9-20, 2024.

About the South Carolina State Fair

The South Carolina State Fair, a self-supporting 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, was organized in 1869 and is dedicated to preserving and promoting South Carolina’s agricultural roots while supporting statewide education. In addition to the 12-day South Carolina State Fair, the charitable organization manages annual football parking and is a popular event venue. The South Carolina State Fair has awarded more than $5 million in scholarships since 1997. More information can be found at

Connect with the South Carolina State Fair

Media Outlets: Click here to access the S.C. State Fair Digital Press Kit.

Video: SC State Fair YouTube

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