17 local High School Students recruited by the YMCA
of Coastal Georgia receive $10,000 HSF Scholarship
The 2012 recipients of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) Georgia Opportunities Scholarship were recently selected and the YMCA of Coastal Georgia is proud to announce that 17 of these high school students came from counties in the association’s district.
Over 200 students applied to the GO Scholarship in Georgia, of this number 120 received the scholarship, 17 of them coming from sites visited by the YMCA of Coastal Georgia. The scholarship awards up to $10,000 per recipient over the course of 4 years of college as long as they maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA) or higher. One of the main goals of this collaborative project between HSF and the Y is to encourage students of Hispanic heritage to become the first in their family to attend college.
HSF is the largest and oldest scholarship funder for Hispanics in the nation. HSF envisions a future where every Latino household will have at least one college graduate, creating an enduring impact on the college outlook of Latino families nationwide, and strengthening the American economy for generations to come.
HSF works with other third party organizations to provide additional scholarships as well. The partnership between the YMCA of Coastal Georgia and HSF began when HSF sought associations to collaborate on the Georgia Opportunities Scholarship and Outreach Program. Savannah and several surrounding counties had been identified as an area of focus by the project’s third-party funder. HSF came to Savannah to look for an organization to serve as the South East host coordinator and selected the YMCA of Coastal Georgia. After this joint venture was established Luis Ruiz was hired as the Youth Development Coordinator for the YMCA of Coastal Georgia and HSF partnership.
Luis traveled to Chatham County and the additional 13 surrounding counties to promote the scholarship and other opportunities available to graduating high school seniors. Luis visited multiple high schools in each county, particularly schools with a large Hispanic population. After speaking with students, he recruited individuals that qualified for the program and mentored them throughout the application process.
In order to qualify students must meet several requirements including; a minimum GPA of a 3.0, be of Hispanic heritage, and a first generation to attend college in their family. The fact that this scholarship will help young adults be the first in their family to attend college is huge. This will instill the habit of attending college after graduating and furthering education.
Of the high schools in the 14 counties approached by the YMCA of Coastal Georgia scholarship recipients came from Chatham, Bryan, Effingham, Liberty County, Evans, Long, Glynn, Tattnall, Toombs, Jasper, and Beaufort. The two recipients from Evans County are both enrolled in the YMCA’s Teen Achievers program.
Teen Achievers is a multi-cultural program that prepares youth for college readiness/career development designed to motivate teens toward high school graduation, college access, and to prepare them for successful entry into the workforce.
The Teen Achievers from Evans County are Alejandra Ramirezs Saucedo and Yesenia Ramirez. Both girls attend high school together and they approached the scholarship process together. Luis added, “These girls worked together throughput this process, motivating each other along the way. They were both very proactive, completing the steps of the application well in advance before deadlines”.
Recruiting for 2013 high school graduates will begin in the Fall. If you are interested in applying or learning more about the application process please contact Luis Ruiz at 706.338.4465 or Lruiz@hsf.net .