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Scholar program offers grants to students

Freshman Tia Grimes first heard about a $1,000 grant in her University 100 class. Starmisha Conyers-Page, freshman, first heard about the same grant through Student Support Services.

As the first in her family to go to college, Grimes was eligible to apply for, and received, the grant through a new program on campus.

Grimes and Conyers-Page, along with nine other students, will receive grants through Midwest Campus Compact Citizen Scholar program. The program is a collaboration between Student Support Services, the Office of Campus Involvement and the Office of Service-Learning Initiatives. Ohio Campus Compact and the Corporation for National and Community Service have provided the grants.

In order to be eligible to apply for the grant, students must be freshmen or sophomores and come from low-income families or be first generation college students.

Each receive a $1,000 grant, applicable to next school year’s tuition and fees, after completing 300 hours of community service over the course of one year.

The purpose of the program is to increase the attitude of civic engagement, as well as “provide support [for students] to serve as agents of civic engagement and respond effectively to community issues,” said Jacquelyn Walters, Assistant Coordinator of Service-Learning Initiatives.

While most of the 300 hours will be completed on an individual basis, there will be some group activities, according to Walters.

The group has already completed one activity this year, volunteering at Wintergarden Park to collect seeds. The seeds would later be used by an Indian reservation to cover bare spots of land.

According to Walters, the group will also participate in BGSurve, which will improve leadership skills. Literacy Learn and Serve, a tutoring program, and taking a course next semester are also on the agenda.

It’s also important, according to Walters, for the students to make connections between the community service they do and their majors and interests.

Since Grimes is majoring in pediatric nursing, she plans on working with children at a daycare for much of her community service hours.

For Grimes, the community service aspect was an important factor in applying for this grant.

“I wanted to do a variety of service,” Grimes said.

The program also aims to get students involved, according to Walters.

“There are too many students who go through the motions, get a degree and never feel they’ve made a difference.”

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