Partnership In Action: San Antonio Area Foundation
The San Antonio (TX) Area Foundation helps donors achieve their charitable goals for the greater benefit of the community. Since 1969, the Area Foundation has distributed $16.5 million in scholarships to more than 4,000 students.
With a 46-year history of helping Greater San Antonio students attend colleges, universities, vocational and technical schools across the U.S., the San Antonio Area Foundation had a great legacy – and lots of scholars to support.
When the Area Foundation’s scholarship program first started, they partnered with another organization and distributed paper applications – enough for 10 percent of graduating high school seniors to apply. Local high school counselors received these forms, but would have to figure out how to distribute them equitably.
These resource challenges mounted, especially as the Area Foundation continued to add successful scholarship funds to its offerings. Today, the Area Foundation manages more than 80 scholarship funds.
Knowing that they wanted to publicize and manage scholarships as fairly as possible, the Area Foundation decided to transition their application to an online system in 2010.
“We’re not losing the ability to have our own process. Working with Scholarship America helps us to still keep that ownership.”
–Bernice Uresti, Program Officer, San Antonio Area Foundation
In 2014, the Area Foundation moved their partnership to Scholarship America. Our team created an online application, with only one application required for numerous scholarship funds. The improvement was noticeable in ease of use – and number of applicants. Applicants increased by 25 percent once the entire system moved online.
“The ability to complete one application while being considered for multiple scholarships is a tremendous benefit to the students,” said Bernice Uresti, Program Officer at the Area Foundation.
The successes of an online application allowed the partnership between the two organizations to deepen: Scholarship America also took over managing certain scholarship programs, complete with scholarship selection, customer service support and reporting.
The partnership has paid off: In 2014, the Area Foundation distributed nearly $1.5 million to 378 students through Scholarship America.