Smith Scholarship Foundation Awards 56 New Scholarships valued at up to 2.8 MILLION DOLLARS!
The J. Craig and Page T. Smith Scholarship Foundation – “The Smith Scholarship Foundation” awarded its highest number of scholarships in its 16- year history. The Smith Foundation is a 501(c)(3) private operating foundation established by the late Mignon C. Smith to reward Alabama high school seniors who have demonstrated exceptional character and community involvement despite financial and personal challenges. The Foundation provides recipients with opportunities to pursue their education with financial assistance for tuition, room, board, books, computers, dorm packs, study abroad options with required tutoring, mental health wellness counseling, and mentoring programs as well as professional seminars, cultural and volunteer events.
Smith Scholars are more than mere names on a check – they are accountable for maintaining grades and adherence to strict guidelines designed to enhance and protect the student’s overall learning experience. Successful scholars are awarded study abroad opportunities and earn internships and co-ops to advance their employment post-graduation. Scholars who complete the undergraduate programs with outstanding grades and demonstrated volunteer leadership and Foundation participation may apply for graduate or professional school scholarships.
Smith Foundation increased the number and type of scholarships awarded in 2021 to meet the needs of students impacted by Covid Restrictions. Covid impacted students’ GPA, ACT scores, and reduced their opportunities to fully prepare for the transition to college. In addition to the 15 Full Scholar Awards, 6 Full Transfer Scholarships were added to permit students to increase their academic preparedness enhancing their ability to maintain honor grades upon entering a four-year program. To reward more students and provide financial support, 3 additional categories were added: Finalist, Semi-Finalist, and Book Awards.
SSF’s investments in the stock market were positive for 2020. Consequently, the Board used the increased earnings to help more students now. Scholarship applicants shared stories of parents losing jobs and students working full-time while attending Zoom classes to make ends meet. Those students who had managed to save for college used their funds to purchase food and pay family bills
In addition to the undergraduate scholarships, 13 graduate scholarships were funded to allow SSF Scholars to continue their studies in medical, dental, counseling, social work, and law school. The resulting new awards totaled over $2.8 million pledged to 56 students at 11 universities, 4 community colleges, and 8 professional or graduate schools bringing the total of active current students receiving support from SSF to 100 for 2021-22.
Applications for 2022-2023 will open in September with a deadline in early January 2023. Please encourage deserving scholars to apply. Requirements include a minimum 2.5 GPA, EFC of less than $6,000, extensive volunteer, community service, or care of family members. The application includes multiple essays, short answers, and letters of recommendation. Full Scholar awards are now higher to offset significant increases in education costs. Funding, subject to guidelines, is now up to $20,000 per year with $3,000 for study abroad for top awards. Alabama high school seniors who are Alabama residents (citizenship is not required) who desire to attend a public Alabama university or college should apply online at their earliest opportunity. Check the Website as additional information will be posted.
"Please spread the word!" Ahrian, “Ms. A.” Executive Director