The Scholarship Fund of Alexandria recently awarded $505,000 in first-year college scholarships to 181 T.C. High School seniors.
Although the annual Scholarship Fund Spring Gala was canceled due to COVID-19, just like the remainder of the school year, students were notified by email that they received the awards. The top prize of $40,000, however, was presented to T.C. senior Foziya Mohammed via Zoom by scholarship sponsors U.S. Sen. Mark Warner and his family.
“It was wonderful because she (Mohammed) was going to start at Northern Virginia Community College because she got some money from schools but she didn’t get enough make up the difference, and this scholarship made up the difference so that she can start at a four year school,” Beth Lovain, executive director of the Scholarship Fund of Alexandria, told ALXnow.
The Scholarship Fund has awarded more than $16 million in college scholarships to more than 4,750 students since 1986, and the annual gala raises upward of $400,000 every year. As the numbers of students at T.C. increase every year, the number of scholarships also increases — especially since two-thirds of Alexandria’s high schoolers are living at or below the poverty level.
The nonprofit still has to award its renewal scholarships, which are for students who are in college and need additional assistance. The amount given is an open number, although Lovain anticipates awarding $625,000 in renewal scholarships, which would put the organization at over $1 million in awards this year. The deadline to apply is July 15.
Lovain said that the organization will continue its silent auction online. The event is usually held at the spring gala.
“We are doing fundraising, because we had to cancel our Gala. And that is the single biggest pot of money to fund our scholarships, and without it we face a hardship,” she said. “So, we’re really trying to get the word out that the students still have the same needs as they always had, or more now.”
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Photo via Scholarship Fund of Alexandria/Facebook