Hispanic Scholarship Fund Awards $25 Million to Hispanic Students
Scholarships mean more Latinos can prepare to become future leaders of America
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF), the nation’s leading organization supporting Hispanic higher education, has awarded scholarships totaling $25.3 million to Hispanic students for the 2006-2007 academic year.
"I am elated that our organization can provide so many Hispanics with the hope and the resources to follow their dreams to go to college through the generous support of corporate partners, committed individuals and private foundations,” said Sara Martinez Tucker, HSF President and CEO. “These HSF Scholars represent a new wave of Latinos who will serve as the future leaders of America.”
The $25.3 million represent scholarships awarded through various HSF programs sponsored by numerous donors, including the HSF Gates Millennium Scholars Program. The scholarships will help newly chosen and continuing HSF Scholars pay their way through college. As a last-dollar award, HSF’s typical scholarships average around $2,500; the Gates Millennium Scholarships cover the full unmet needs of scholarship recipients and are funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in partnership with HSF.
The application period for the 2007-2008 academic year begins on August 1. Students who are interested in applying for scholarships for the next academic year should visit the HSF web site and apply online.
Tucker pointed out that Hispanics are the fastest growing and youngest sector of the nation’s population. One in three Hispanics is under 18 years of age with the overall Hispanic population registering a median age of 27.
"It is essential to our country’s future that we educate our young Latinos so that we can realize the full potential of this sector of the workforce,” she said.
Yet, with tuition and fees continuing to skyrocket, a lack of financial resources remains the single biggest barrier for Hispanic families seeking a college education for their sons and daughters. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, Hispanic higher education needs are less subsidized than those of any other group. Even after receiving financial aid through federal sources, 57 percent of all Hispanic college students have financial needs that they cannot meet, compared to 19 percent of non-Hispanic white students.
While HSF core programming provides critical funding to help fill financial gaps, HSF also provides vital information to families and students about other financial aid sources and helps guide them through the college application and standardized testing process by organizing Town Hall meetings and Steps for Success Saturday workshops. These public gatherings are held in communities around the country and last year reached out to more than 40,000 Latino family members. Once HSF scholarship recipients have entered college, HSF organizes Scholar Chapters on individual campuses to provide peer support and to connect the students with HSF Alumni who serve as mentors.
HSF’s comprehensive approach has proven very successful. An independent study showed that 97 percent of all HSF Scholars go on to receive their undergraduate degrees, with 88 percent of HSF Alumni earning more than the national median income and 59 percent earning more than double the Hispanic median income.