A group of 150 high school seniors arrive in Atlanta today for the 2016 Coca-Cola Scholars Weekend. During the four-day weekend, the Scholars will participate in a Leadership Development Institute, an intensive training that will challenge them to develop an inside-out leadership philosophy. They’ll also tour local landmarks, engage with former Coca-Cola Scholars, participate in a group community service project, and be the guests of honor at the 28th annual Scholars Banquet featuring keynote speaker David Rubenstein, American financier and philanthropist best known as co-founder and co-chief executive officer of The Carlyle Group. Visit Cokeurl.com/2016Scholars for a full list of the 2016 Coca-Cola Scholars.

Founded in 1986 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Coca-Cola, The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation is a joint effort of Coca-Cola Bottlers across America and The Coca-Cola Company. It’s one of the largest corporate-sponsored, achievement-based scholarship programs of its kind in the country. Including the 2016 class, the Foundation has awarded over 5,700 Coca‑Cola Scholars with a total of $59.4 million in scholarships. The Coca-Cola system believes that investing in students who are leaders, both academically and in service to others, will result in positive, lasting change and sustainable communities.

Each year, Coca-Cola Scholarship recipients are welcomed into a vibrant and growing family that fosters lasting connections. Coca-Cola Scholar alumni stay in touch through regional councils, special events, and though their local Coca-Cola bottling facilities. Alumni often unite to organize and implement community service projects that enable them to make an even greater impact together.

Over the last few years, we've profiled several Coca-Cola Scholar alumni who have gone on to exciting and inspiring careers. Get to know a few of them here:

Elise Stefanik is a 2002 Coca-Cola Scholar, Harvard grad, and youngest woman elected to Congress as of 2015.

Coca-Cola Scholar Elise Stefanik is the Youngest Woman Elected to Congress

Senator Ben Sasse is a Coca-Cola Scholar, an organization that aims to develop service-minded leaders.

Coca-Cola Scholars in Congress: A Q&A with Senator Ben Sasse

CEO of gilt.com Michelle Peluso was part of the first class of Coca-Cola Scholars in 1989.
Gilt CEO Michelle Peluso

Career Advice From Gilt Groupe CEO Michelle Peluso

Coca-Cola Scholar Felix Brandon Lloyd and his wife, Jordan Lloyd Bookey, serve as Chief Dad and Chief Mom of Zoobean, which offers parents and their kids personalized recommendations on books and apps that match age, reading level and interests

Education Curation: Zoobean Builds Child Literacy With Handpicked Books, Learning Apps

Kathryn Minshew is co-founder and CEO of themuse.com, a website providing immersive job search tools, career-related articles, professional development tools and job matching resources.


Musings of an Entrepreneur Who Knows What She Wants

Jason Pate was awarded a Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation scholarship in 2005 and at 25 became co-owner of Tava Indian Kitchen with the goal of making Indian food more accessible to the American palate.

Jason in the kitchen at Tava's San Francisco location.

Gregory Miller

Jason Pate: From Coca-Cola Scholar to Indian Restaurant Entrepreneur

Coca-Cola Scholar and intern Kelsey Tainsh shares her story at a leadership presentation at Coca-Cola headquarters.

Inspirational Homecoming: Coke Scholar, Cancer Survivor Shares Story of Perseverance at Coke HQ

Coca Cola Scholar Michael Tubbs ran for city council in 2012 to represent Stockton's 6th district.

'True Son’: Can 23-Year-Old Councilman Michael Tubbs Reinvent His Hometown?

Read more Scholar profiles here, and stay tuned for highlights from the 2016 Coca-Cola Scholars weekend.