The Second Annual Cash for College scholarship awareness night in Clarkdale brought together 17 scholarship providers and more than 200 high school students and returning college students from Sedona and the Verde Valley to learn about scholarship opportunities. The event, hosted by the Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona in partnership with the Arizona Community Foundation of Yavapai County and sponsored by Yavapai College, is part of an ongoing effort to increase awareness about financial support for higher education available to local students.
“There’s not much we can do to reduce the cost of higher education,” said Carol Chamberlain, Regional Director of ACF of Yavapai County. “But we can show students how to make higher education more accessible through financial aid. That’s why we introduced Cash for College two years ago in Prescott and joined with ACF of Sedona to expand the event to Sedona and the Verde Valley last year.”
The event was organized much like an activity fair. Students and families explored different scholarship opportunities, met with representatives of the organizations offering scholarships, and learned about application deadlines and requirements.
“What I loved about this year’s event was the diversity of opportunities it brought to students’ attention,” said Tracey McConnell, Regional Director of ACF of Sedona. “Many people think you either have to have straight A’s or a compelling financial need, but students’ interests and community involvement can be just as valuable in making them eligible for scholarship opportunities.”
Organizations presenting at Cash for College included the Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona, Arizona State University, Dorrance Scholarship Program, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Grand Canyon University, Northern Arizona University, Northern Arizona Healthcare Foundation, Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.), Prescott College, Rotary Club of Sedona Red Rocks, Rotary Club of the Verde Valley, Sedona Arts Festival, Sedona-Verde Valley Firefighter Charities, Verde Valley Leadership, Yavapai College, and Yavapai Symphony.
The Arizona Community Foundation was also present, sharing information about scholarship opportunities available to students in Sedona and the Verde Valley and the organization’s unique online application portal that automatically matches students with more than 90 scholarships for which they qualify. ACF is the largest private provider of scholarships in the state and the application portal will open on January 1, 2018.
Many of the scholarship opportunities presented at Cash for College have their application deadlines in the early spring. To receive a digital copy of the local scholarship directory provided at the event, contact Tracey McConnell at TMcConnell@azfoundation.org and include “Scholarship Directory” in the subject line.
The Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona invited community members to celebrate the 17th Annual Spirit of Sedona honorees and 2017 grant recipients on Thursday, September 28. The event provided an opportunity for community members to learn about the projects funded through the annual competitive grants process and hear the stories of the individuals recognized for their significant contributions to the community.
“Honorees this year found ways to make an impact through volunteering, providing scholarship opportunities for local youth and sharing the profits of their business with the community,” said Tracey McConnell, Regional Philanthropic Advisor for the Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona. “It really shows that there’s no one way to be a philanthropist, but when you hear their stories, you see that they’re all guided by that same desire to make a difference.”
2017 Spirit of Sedona Honorees
Members of the local Board of Advisors also shared information about the various projects funded through the annual competitive grants process and recognized the nonprofit organizations that received funding. With the support of its advisors and volunteer grant review panelists, ACF of Sedona awarded more than $228,000 in grants this year to 47 nonprofit organizations serving Sedona and Verde Valley in the areas of animal welfare, arts & culture, education, environment & sustainability, community health, tolerance & diversity, social services, children, senior citizens and individuals with disabilities.
The Spirit of Sedona was made possible through the generosity of local sponsors including presenting sponsor BMO Harris Bank. Other sponsors included Eye Boutique of Sedona; Paul Tibbs, Edward Jones; PJ’s Village Pub; and Larry Kane Photography.
For more information about the event or this year’s honorees and grantees, contact Tracey McConnell, or call 928.399.7218.
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