St. Paul, Minn. (PRWEB) July 24, 2012
ECMC Foundation announced the award of $1.4 million in college grants to 241 graduating high school seniors in Virginia, Oregon and Connecticut.
“We’re thrilled to continue our tradition of helping students pursue their college dreams,” said Dick Boyle, president and CEO of ECMC Group. “As the cost of higher education continues to rise and the economy continues to struggle, our mission of helping educate America becomes more important than ever.”
The grants are part of the ECMC Scholars Program, which was created to encourage low-income students to pursue postsecondary education. Public high schools are chosen to participate in the program according to need-based criteria. Counselors and teachers identify students who have the potential to succeed in college but may need extra help. Selected candidates go through an intensive two-year mentoring program in their junior and senior years of high school. Each student receives $4,000 for their first year of college and an additional $2,000 for completing their second year.
The majority of ECMC Scholars are the first in their families to attend college. Some, like Jahmarciay Barr, didn’t initially think college was an option.
“This was an experience I needed because it changed my perspective on life and it made me see that there is hope for somebody like me who doesn’t really have much,” said Barr, a 2012 Oregon ECMC Scholar. “It made me feel like I could make something of myself even with a lot of odds against me.”
The ECMC Scholars Program was established in 2003 in Virginia and has since expanded to Oregon and Connecticut. To date, the ECMC Foundation has pledged $10.8 million in grants to help nearly 1,800 ECMC Scholars realize their dream of going to college.
About ECMC Foundation
ECMC Foundation helps people of all ages further their education goals with a concentration on low-income individuals as well as those who may be the first member of their family to attend college. Its innovative outreach programs focus on college access, retention and success. ECMC Foundation is funded by ECMC Group.
For more information about the ECMC Foundation or the ECMC Scholars Program, please visit http://www.ecmcfoundation.org.