By Dr. Kimberly Leverette
November is an exciting time during the school year. Students are getting into the thick of learning without looking forward too far to holiday break; diving into important lessons and honing their academic skills. November is also a crucial time for students who have just entered their last year of secondary education – deciding what they want to do after graduation whether it be finding a job, looking into the trades or heading off to college.
For students who have decided on the college path, now is the time to start thinking about how they might fund their dreams. Which is timely since November also marks National Scholarship Month. The purpose of the month is to raise awareness of the role that scholarships play in reducing the need for student loans and making higher education more accessible.
Scholarships played a vital role in my education journey. I was able to start my college career because of the scholarships I was awarded and continued to look for those opportunities throughout my path; obtaining a master’s degree, an education specialist degree and later my doctorate. Having been blessed with the opportunity to apply for and receive scholarships in my life, it is important to me to share that information with students currently looking for those same opportunities.
Scholarships aren’t just for academically advanced students or talented athletes. There are a variety of scholarships for students of all abilities and all walks of life. For students in Genesee County, the Community Foundation of Greater Flint makes it easy for individuals to apply for multiple scholarships at the same time. Applications open in January each year; however, students can get a head start by seeing what scholarships may be available to them.
Another scholarship that benefits Flint students is the Flint Promise. The scholarship program facilitated by Flint & Genesee Education & Talent is available for graduates of high schools in the city of Flint that live in the city. It covers the cost of tuition after federal grants and other scholarships have been applied allowing Flint students to attend higher education institutions at little or no cost. Those who receive the Flint Promise scholarship can attend local colleges and universities including Kettering University, Mott Community College and University of Michigan-Flint.
Our current Flint Promise scholars have seen remarkable success since the program launched in 2018. We have had seventeen scholars graduate from University of Michigan-Flint and Mott Community College with more set to graduate in Spring of 2023. It has been amazing to see the continued success of the students in the program.
This month, I hope that students will take some time to consider their future and how scholarships can help them in their success.