The Bonner Community Scholars Program is a four-year civic engagement program providing leadership programming, academic support, engagement opportunities and a social network.

Being a Bonner Scholar involves a commitment not only to service, but also to learning how to be an effective change agent for one’s campus, community, and beyond. Ideal Bonner candidates are passionate about civic engagement and eliminating systematic inequalities, demonstrate community involvement, embrace working in a team setting, have leadership potential, and a commitment to the Bonner mission of “Access to Education & Opportunity to Serve.”

Bonner is founded on six common commitments:

  • Diversity - We respect and embrace the many dimensions of diversity in our private and public lives.
  • Social Justice- We advocate for fairness, impartiality, and equality while addressing systemic social and environmental issues.
  • International Perspective - We develop international understanding that enables us to participate successfully in a global society.
  • Spiritual Exploration - We explore personal belief while respecting the spiritual practices of others. 
  • Civic Engagement - We participate intentionally as a citizen in the democratic process, actively engaging in public policy and direct service.
  • Community Building - We establish and sustain a vibrant community of place, personal relationships, and common interests. 

We invite all first year students to apply and select 12 new participants each year. First generation college students, Minnesota residents, and students who have participated in college access programs (eg. Upward Bound, College Possible, AVID, TRIO, etc) are strongly encouraged to apply. To be eligible for the program participants must have work-study as part of their financial aid package and a demonstrated commitment to community involvement.

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First-year Bonners earn their work-study tutoring at local public schools. Sophomore, junior and senior Bonners earn their work-study at various Twin Cities non-profit organizations. Meet The Current/Past Bonners

Program Features

First Year Bonner Orientation 
arrive on campus early. Meet Bonner students and staff.

First Year Service Trip
dedicated meeting times to prepare for a week long service trip over college break. 

Sophomore Exchange
a short service-based experience with Bonners from another school.

Summer of Service
paid summer internship working with a non-profit. Available summer after second year. View 2015 Summer of Service Posters

Bonner Congress
leadership opportunity to represent Macalester's Bonner program at the national level

Summer Leadership Institute
leadership opportunity to represent Macalester's Bonner program at the national level

Senior Capstone Experience
culminating project reflecting and synthesizing on learning throughout the Bonner program.

Resume building 
personal, leadership, and professional skills development