The Santa Clarita chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or the NAACP, has announced that it is giving away $13,000 in scholarships to seven Black and African American student applicants.
“Our main goal is to allow individuals that might not otherwise have an opportunity to continue their education, disadvantaged youth that would like to go to college but don’t have the means to do so, to provide them with some of the funds to go ahead and attend college,” said Valerie Bradford, NAACP Santa Clarita president. “That’s what we wanted to focus our energy on.”
According to an NAACP Santa Clarita press release, “dreams of continuing education oftentimes elude youth of color for a host of reasons including the lack of financial support.” Therefore, five $2,000 “Future Leader Scholarships” will be awarded to students in order to bridge this education gap.
Only 7% of public school teachers in the United States are Black, so to encourage and assist more Black students to pursue a degree in education, $1,500 “Chanelle Scholarships” will be awarded to two individuals who are planning to pursue this path. The scholarship was named to honor Bradford’s granddaughter working as the only African American educator at her school.
The funds for the scholarship were generated mostly through a documentary premiere fundraiser the NAACP hosted on Oct. 10 of the documentary “Scrum.” $10,000 were raised for these scholarships during this event while the other $3,000 in scholarship funds came from private donors.
The deadline for scholarship applications was moved to Jan. 15 from its original date of Nov. 30.
“We are looking at high school seniors, maybe college freshmen, but the main qualification is that they currently reside in [the Santa Clarita Valley],” said Bradford. “They can be applying to a college, a trade school, a university, anywhere.”
Applicants must also be enrolled or accepted to an accredited college or university, hold a 3.0 or above grade point average and show intent to pursue a career in education,according to NAACP Santa Clarita’s website. Eligibility also requires fulfilling an essay requirement, requesting to write “an impactful essay describing a challenging time in your life in which you had to work with others to overcome an obstacle (or obstacles),” at a maximum of 1,000 words. Essays are to be submitted to NAACPSCEducation@gmail.com.
NAACP Santa Clarita leaders who make up the Scholarship Committee will review applications. Award notices for applicants will be sent on Dec. 20 while awards will be distributed on a yet-to-be specified date in January 2022.
Those interested in applying for these scholarships can visit the NAACP Santa Clarita website. Scholarship application instructions as well as eligibility requirements are available on the website. Applicants must also be a NAACP member to apply.
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