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About Young Scholars


“Investing and believing in people, that’s what we do in a nutshell.”—Karen Alton-Lowe.

In 2006, Barry and Karen Lowe launched a program inspired by Barry’s parents after delivering a Thanksgiving meal to a young single mother. The program’s mission, “Mentoring and empowering students to earn a college degree,” is accomplished through its two-pronged approach.  Knowing that a scholarship alone cannot ensure students overcome the massive barriers of earning a college degree, the program starts with middle school students to equip them and their families with the knowledge and skills necessary to navigate the college experience. Through our unique partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Oklahoma-Bartlesville, students are matched with a mentor who works with the student and joins us in our programs and classes. After completing the first phase, students are granted a scholarship of up to $4,000/year to an Oklahoma University through one of our seven scholarship sources. We support and encourage students to pursue a college degree every step of the way.


Our tagline, "Lowe Family Inspired, Community Supported," continues to honor the advice of Barry’s Parents, Wilbur D. and Grace Laverne Snider Lowe, and Barry and Karen's vision.

a photo of Wilbur D. and Grace Laverne Snider Lowe


"Mentoring and empowering students to earn a college degree"


  • College Degree
  • Financial Responsibility
  • Personal Accountability
  • Self-Confidence
  • Self-Discipline
  • Self-Motivation
  • Self-Sufficiency
  • Volunteerism

The Young Scholars of Bartlesville is a Standards of Excellence Organization

Our organization is recognized as having completed the Standards for Excellence course by the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits. Our certification is valid from 2023-2028, and we can be found on the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits graduates page. 

Program Demographics

Retention Rate






Native American


Single Parent


First Generation Students


Total Scholarships Distributed


Current College Graduates


Volunteer Hours 2023


Volunteer Hours Total


Program GPA, Spring 23


College GPA, Spring 23


Total GPA, Spring 23



Partner Universities

In 2006, Oklahoma State University became our inaugural university partner, expanding educational choices for students. Subsequently, Oklahoma Wesleyan University joined in early 2007, offering local options in Business and Nursing. Rogers State University joined in 2008, providing flexibility with classes in Claremore and Bartlesville. In 2022, Young Scholars of Bartlesville took on stewardship of the College High Wildcats Scholarship, the Denny Zoot Memorial Scholarship, and the Sears Family Fund, broadening college opportunities for our students to attend any Oklahoma University.

7th -12th Grades

We assist students starting from 6th to 10th grade, partnering them with volunteer mentors from Big Brothers Big Sisters. Mentors support students and parents through high school and college transitions, engaging in regular discussions on education, future opportunities, goal setting, and career planning. Meetings occur a few times each month, with students and parents meeting separately with mentors.

Bartlesville Public Schools

History- Young Scholars of Bartlesville began with Jane Phillips Elementary, later expanding to Richard Kane and Oak Park Elementary in 2010 and 2011, all of which are Bartlesville Public Schools.

All prospective and current students must attend Bartlesville Public Schools.


Program graduates applying to Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma Wesleyan University, or Rogers State University may receive up to $4,000/year in scholarship funds based on availability. Those attending other Oklahoma universities will receive scholarships based on available funds and program duration. Scholarship recipients will also offer guidance to new program entrants.

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