The first ever Cash for College scholarship awareness night in Clarkdale brought together 31 scholarship providers and more than 150 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 last year in Prescott, and continue to highlight local scholarships and expand our reach through the addition of a second scholarship awareness night this year with our partners at ACF of Sedona.”
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 Chamberlain. “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 Northern Arizona Healthcare Foundation seeking to support students aspiring to obtain a degree in nursing, the Sedona Arts Festival seeking to support students planning to pursue a degree in the arts, as well as a number of scholarships open to students with a history of community involvement, pursuing vocational studies and many other unique opportunities.
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 150 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, 2017.
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 Mouth Project, a touring play developed by Red Earth Theatre has been named the winning project in the Healthly Challenge. After three nonprofit presentations and deliberation by five expert panelists, Bill Cammock, Board of Advisors Chair of the Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona, made the announcement of the Healthy Challenge grant—the largest grant ever awarded by ACF of Sedona.
Equally funded by ACF of Sedona, Northern Arizona Healthcare, and Delta Dental Foundation of Arizona, the $75,000 Healthy Challenge grant was created with the goal of improving overall health in Sedona and the Verde Valley by focusing on oral health and its systemic impact.
The Mouth Project will be produced and tour with scripts to be made available both in English and Spanish. It is a collaboration of several creative Sedona locals. Kate Hawkes, Executive Director of Red Earth Theatre, leads the project. The team includes former Disney writer Dev Ross, registered dental hygienist Mei Wei Wong, video producer and cameraman Angelo LeMarco, high school Spanish teacher Sarah Reynolds, and audio/photography/lighting/special effects expert Dexx Negron.
Script development will begin this summer with production getting underway in the fall. Stay tuned for the Mouth Project, coming to a stage, school, or computer near you.
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