Parisa Lotfi, 21, is one of 73 scholars nationally to receive the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. She was selected from about 700 applicants, said American River College spokesman Scott Crow.
Formal announcement of the award is planned for Monday, Crow said.
The scholarship is intended to cover a significant share of Lotfi's educational expenses, including tuition, living costs, books and fees, for the final two to three years needed to complete a bachelor's degree.
Scott said Lotfi majors in mechanical engineering at ARC and maintains a transferable GPA of 3.91.
She has applied for transfer to the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, Davis, and UC Berkeley.
She previously emigrated from Iran and comes from a low-income background, he said.
Previously, Lotfi won a National Science Foundation Scholarship for prospective transfer students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics fields, Crow said. She also received a Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement award and scholarships from Pacific Gas and Electric Co., the Iranian American Scholarship Fund, the SR Education Group and the ARC Foundation.
"It shows you the initiative she is taking with her family background and limited income," Crow said. He called the $30,000 annual award "very significant."
"There is something like 700 students around the country who have applied who had to go through a rigorous process at the campus level," he said. "It literally takes months to go through this."