For immediate release
December 22, 2010
Contact: Andy Pino
The Coca-Cola Foundation Invests $1 Million to Help First-Generation Students Earn College Degrees
SAN FRANCISCO (December 22, 2010) – The Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) announced today that The Coca-Cola Foundation has pledged $1 million over the next four years to help finance scholarships for Latino students from across the country. The multi-year grant will help approximately 175 students to successfully transition from a community college to a four-year institution. This grant is a part of the $4 million funds that were awarded to 38 organizations across the U.S. and Canada in the fourth quarter of 2010.
“Most of these students are the first in their families to go to college, and this scholarship support from The Coca-Cola Foundation will help them clear the financial hurdles they face on their way to a four-year degree,” said Hispanic Scholarship Fund President and CEO Frank Alvarez. “We are extremely grateful for The Coca-Cola Foundation’s investment in these students, and their continued support for our efforts to put a degree in every Latino household.”
The grant comes to HSF as part of The Coca-Cola Foundation’s First Generation Scholarship program which supports students who are the first in their immediate families to go to college. The scholarships will enable students to focus more on their studies and obtaining a degree, and spend less time worrying about student loans and working to pay for college.
“At the Foundation, our goal is to make a positive impact by promoting and creating sustainable communities around the world,” said Ingrid Saunders Jones, senior vice president, Global Community Connections, The Coca-Cola Company and chair of The Coca-Cola Foundation. “The funding provided to these 38 organizations will support community programs that align to our giving priorities across the U.S. and Canada.”
For over 35 years, HSF has worked to help Hispanic students overcome the challenges they face on the path to a college degree. Approximately 80 percent of HSF scholars who transfer from community colleges to four-year universities graduate within five and a half years. That’s nearly 30 percent higher than the national average for students transferring from community colleges.
Since 1991, The Coca-Cola Foundation has invested $2.9 million in First Generation Scholarship support, matching gifts and event sponsorship for students through the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. This latest grant comes as HSF increases its efforts under “Generation 1st Degree,” an effort to close the "degree gap" that exists between Hispanic students and their peers. The initiative seeks to help at least one person in each Hispanic household earn a college degree, and then leverage that credential in order to assist others in the family seek the same achievement.
About Hispanic Scholarship Fund
Founded in 1975, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund believes that the country prospers when all Americans have access to the opportunities a college education can afford. As the nation’s leading Hispanic higher education fund, HSF works to address the barriers that keep many Latinos from earning a college degree. HSF has awarded over $300 million in scholarships over the past 35 years and has supported a broad range of outreach and education programs to help students and their families navigate collegiate life, from gaining admission and securing financial aid to finding employment after graduation. 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. For more information about the Hispanic Scholarship Fund please visit: www.HSF.net.
About The Coca-Cola Foundation
Since its inception, The Coca-Cola Foundation has donated more than $355 million to community projects and initiatives across the globe. For more information about The Coca-Cola Foundation, please go to: