By Brittany Miller – Features Editor
Since 1945, the Grand Rapids Community Foundation has provided students with the chance to fund their educational aspirations, and this year is no different.
“Through providing scholarships, Grand Rapids Community Foundation has been increasing opportunity for generations,” said Kara Kuntz, a marketing intern for GRCF. “We believe all people deserve access to opportunities to achieve their full potential.”
Over 2,000 applications were received, but only 666 students were awarded, and 51 of those applicants indicated that they planned to attend Grand Rapids Community College. The number of applicants included the diverse student population of Grand Rapids, graduates of Grand Rapids Public Schools, and first generation college students.
According to the foundation’s award information, 56 percent of first generation college students received scholarship funds, while 35 percent of the recipients were part of the diverse population.
“90 percent of our online applicants chose to answer the optional race question on our application,” Kuntz said. “Based on this information, 35 percent or 233 of our total scholarships awarded were awarded to applicants identifying as African American, Asian, Hispanic, Multiracial, Native-American or another race other than white.”
This year’s awards totaled over $1 million in scholarships for students, including those who attend Grand Rapids Community College. Kuntz noted that in total, Grand Rapids Community College students received $63,350 in scholarships. This ranked GRCC fifth among “Michigan’s Top 5 College Awards” right below Ferris State University, Grand Valley State University, Michigan State University, and University of Michigan were ranked first, second and third at the top of the list.
Grand Rapids Community Foundation continues its commitment to offering affordable education for students of all backgrounds and income levels.
“We believe in creating and sustaining a vibrant, inclusive, and magnetic community,” Kuntz said. “Grand Rapids Community Foundation has a mission to build and manage our community’s permanent endowment and lead the community to strengthen the lives of its people. Providing scholarships is just one way Grand Rapids Community Foundation puts our mission into action.”