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This month, President Barack Obama unveiled a new proposal, America’s College Promise, to make two years of community college free for qualified students. The President further advocated for his proposal to the nation in the 2015 State of the Union address.
Scholarship America applauds the President for prioritizing the issue of addressing college access and affordability and offering solutions. America’s College Promise has started a very healthy discussion and has helped to spotlight the importance of providing post-secondary educational opportunities to all Americans.
The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI) is proud to announce that Max Espinoza of Scholarship America has joined its 2015-2016 Advisory Council. The Council represents national leadership from a variety of sectors, including government, corporate America, unions, academia, and foundations. CHCI’s Advisory Council members serve as ambassadors for the organization and give their time and expertise in service to CHCI’s mission and the betterment of the Latino community.
Scholarship America’s Senior Vice President, Education Programs and Policy, Max Espinoza, joined President Obama, the First Lady, and Vice President Biden along with hundreds of college presidents and other education leaders today to announce new actions to help more students prepare for and graduate from college. The White House College Opportunity Day of Action helps to support the President’s commitment to partner with colleges and universities, business leaders, and nonprofits to support students across the country to help our nation reach its goal of leading the world in college attainment.
Today’s participants were asked to commit to new action in one of four areas: building networks of colleges around promoting completion, creating K-16 partnerships around college readiness, investing in high school counselors as part of the First Lady’s Reach Higher initiative, and increasing the number of college graduates in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
As a member of this initiative, Scholarship America commits to focus on serving low-to-moderate income students and communities of greatest need. Specifically, Scholarship America will add 110 community-based scholarship chapters across the nation by 2020. Read more about Scholarship America’s commitment here.
Six miles south of the Canadian border, Minnesota hunters visiting Crosby, North Dakota, may not be the likeliest of fundraisers, but you’d be mistaken if you traveled to the area.
Several years ago, a group of hunters visited the town of 1,000 – the largest in Divide County – and found themselves welcomed and impressed with the tight-knit community. To give back to the community that hosts them, they wanted to raise money for Divide County Area Dollars for Scholars.
Those fall fundraisers have raised thousands of dollars for the affiliate. Illness of the coordinator put the fundraiser on hold for a couple of years, but Divide County Area Dollars for Scholars revived the event in his honor. Last October’s dinner and auction brought in special guest Chuck Foreman, retired NFL Minnesota Vikings player, and raised an incredible $25,000.
Grassroots events like these help grow Divide County Area Dollars for Scholars, as well as demonstrate the affiliate’s strong ties to the community. It’s a relationship that has proven fruitful for the past 22 years.
Just southeast of Des Moines, Iowa, is a suburban community with a small-town feel. With about 4,000 residents, the city of Carlisle may be small, but activities abound -- and Rachael Hagedorn from Carlisle Area Dollars for Scholars jumped right in. “From the very beginning of her participation [in 2009], … Rachael was offering to take on work,” said Clint Smalley, president of Carlisle Area Dollars for Scholars. “She was always thinking up new ways to bring public attention to what we were doing and would often add to her own workload to get the word out.”
Rachael immediately invested in the affiliate, even as a new face in an established community. Moving an entire family is no small task, but the Hagedorn family was attracted to Carlisle’s family-friendly atmosphere. “When my oldest son reached high school, my husband and I wanted [our kids] to go to a smaller school where they could be involved in everything,” she said.
Influenced by parents who were both educators, Rachael said she was always involved in her kids’ education. And, as her kids became more involved in sports and other extracurricular activities, Rachael did, too. All of those activities presented an opportunity to get to know her neighbors, and the family’s next-door neighbor happened to volunteer with an organization called Carlisle Area Dollars for Scholars.
“We were new, and we knew we wanted to get involved,” Rachael recalled. “I wanted to be involved in the school. My neighbors were involved in Dollars for Scholars and said, ‘You should join!’ So I did.”
Scholarship America is pleased to announce that Robert Ballard Senior Vice President, Philanthropy for USA Funds, has been elected to serve as vice-chair of the organization's Board of Trustees. In addition, Scholarship America welcomes Dr. Sandy Robinson of Florida State College at Jacksonville and William Young of Plastipak Holdings, Inc. and Absopure Water Co., who have been elected to serve as members of the Board.
The George Family Foundation recognized Scholarship America President & CEO Lauren Segal as one of 84 exceptional women leaders making remarkable contributions to building the Twin Cities at its first-ever “Celebrating Twin Cities Women Leaders” event on September 16, 2014.
“Celebrating Twin Cities Women Leaders” was held at the Guthrie Theater in conjunction with a preview performance of Wendy Wasserstein’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, The Heidi Chronicles. Written in 1989, The Heidi Chronicles is a story of women struggling to make greater contributions to the world of art, business and government. The event celebrated women who have served as CEO, board chair or president of large corporations, colleges and universities, government and nonprofit organizations, health care, and major arts organizations in the Twin Cities.
Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund, the largest private scholarship fund for 9/11 families, announced it has reached the $100 million mark in needs-based scholarships awards to 2,568 students since September 11, 2001. That figure includes $11,463,072 in scholarship awards to support 776 students during the 2013-2014 academic year. The average award is $13,415 per student.
The Dream Award is Scholarship America’s renewable scholarship program for financially needy students who have overcome barriers and have successfully started their college education. Awards were made to 12 students selected from across the nation who are entering their second year or higher of education beyond high school; the scholarships are both renewable and increase in amount each year. Scholarship America awarded more than $150,000 to this first group of students, with scholarships ranging from $10,000 to $15,000 based on the individual student’s financial need. Each student’s award will increase by $1,000 each year to help them successfully finish school and earn their degrees.
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Scholarship America’s Dream Award is a renewable scholarship fund targeted toward completion. These annually-increasing awards will be given to students selected from across the nation who are entering their second year of education beyond high school.
Scholarship America's blog, The Scholarship Coach, appears weekly at USNews.com, featuring expert advice on all kinds of scholarship issues. Here on the site, we feature a new highlight from the blog every week, and you can also download a free Scholarship Coach e-book!
Scholarship America is dedicated to helping students get their degrees. Our 2013 Annual Report, Focus on the Finish Line, features statistics, stories, and student accounts of the importance of college completion.
Visit the online report to learn more and hear from our President, Lauren Segal.