Scholarships for Ecuadorian Students

BACKGROUND

The Ecuadorian Scholars Fund (ESF) was created to inspire young ecuadorians to pursue a college degree. Organizacion Juventud Ecuatoriana (JUVE) strongly believes that education is the road to success, and has established this annual scholarship fund geared to support and encourage the leaders of tomorrow.

THE NEED FOR THE PROJECT
The results of a survey done by Associated Press-Univision, have revealed that 54% of Hispanics indicated the lack of funds as a great obstacle to obtain their College degrees. With 202,000 individuals, the Ecuadorian population is the fourth highest Hispanic population in New York City. Among the Ecuadorian community, only 8.5% have achieved a Bachelor’s or a higher degree; 4.5% lesser than the national percentage of Hispanics. 2014 will mark the sixth consecutive year awarding the ESF scholarships; which grants five $1,000 scholarships to college-level Ecuadorian students of Ecuadorian descent to help cover their school-related expenses.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

GOAL:
Ecuadorian Scholars Fund wil support Ecuadorian students living in the New York Tri-State Area to obtain a higher education degree through a financial contribution.

OBJECTIVES:
Our program will:

  • Help this year with $1,000 scholarships to 10 Ecuadorian students living in the New York Tri-State area, with outstanding academic activity and involved in community work. Scholarships will be awarded on November, 2014.
  • Monitor the performance of students during the fall semester of 2014 (September -December). This will allow the organization to provide support to scholarship recipients to ensure success. If the organization is unable to help the scholarship winners in some way, we will refer them to an entity that can address their specific case.
  • Measure its success on January 15, 2015 to verify that the five students have completed the fall semester of 2014, and that their total grade point average (GPA) remains or exceeds 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

METHOD:

A committee has been put together for this project to coordinate the promotion process, receiving applications, the selection of the winners in this scholarship contest, and the evaluation of the project’s success. This scholarship is intended to assist students in paying costs related to their studies at institutions located in the states of New York, New Jersey or Connecticut. The organization will work with the Department of Education and/or local universities to verify that students meet the criteria for these scholarships. The requirements to apply and participate in the scholarship competition are:

1. Must be an Ecuadorian citizen or of Ecuadorian descent.

2. Must be enrolled, or accepted, to study in the fall semester of 2014 at an accredited university in the NY Tri-State area.

3. Must have a total grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.

4. Must participate in 2 workshops of “Leadership and Team Building” provided by JUVE.

5. Must provide proof of having completed a minimum of 15 hours of community service in 2014.

6. Must write an argumentative essay about the following topic:

“Recently, the United States is facing an immigration and humanitarian crisis caused by a growing influx of thousands of unaccompanied child immigrants. What measures should the US and Latin American governments take to alleviate this crisis, and prevent from happening in the future? Propose a detailed project or initiative.”

For reasons of transparency, the people involved in the process of implementation, evaluation and selection of the winners may not receive any scholarships. The project began June 27, 2014 and end on January 15, 2015. The scholarship contest is open to the public through an electronic application on JUVE’s website on July 15, 2014 at 12 am and will close on August 31, 2014 at 11:50 pm.

The Director of Programs is responsible for receiving electronic applications with all the requirements attached, and will assign an identification number for each essay. The purpose of the identification number is to conceal the name of the fellowship candidate and thus avoid any discrimination or preference. The same Director of Technology will submit the essays to the jury, and the requirements will be sent to the person assigned to verify such compliance. Consequently, the Director of Communications is responsible for reviewing compliance with the requirements submitted by the candidates for the scholarships. Requirements will be verified through documents from universities, high school, plus a digital copy (by scanner) of an identification from Ecuador (the applicant’s, or their parents’ or grandparents’ if they were born in the U.S.). Additionally, the Director of Communications will check that candidates have met the requirements in the areas of Leadership, Team Building, and community service.

The selection committee (the jury) is comprised of professionals and educators from various sectors, who will evaluate all applications based on leadership, service Community trial quality, and academic performance. The Program Director and the President of the Board of Directors will receive the qualifications of candidates for the scholarships, will identify the 10 winners according to the results of the selection committee and will contact the 2014 scholarship contest winners.

The winners will be published in www.juventudecuatoriana.org and through press releases by September 10, 2014. The scholarship winners will be contacted via telephone by September 10, 2014, and that same day, those who did not win will be notified and will be thanked for their participation. The official presentation of the scholarships will be at a public event (Gala) in the Ballroom at 4 W 43rd St, New York, NY 10036, on November, 2014. The scholarship winners, the students who applied, sponsors, elected officials, the media, and members of the organization and of the community will be invited to this ceremony.

STAFF AND ADMINISTRATION

  • Edwin Quito, Executive Director, will coordinate the project ” Ecuadorian Scholars Fund ” at JUVE and is responsible for the development, implementation and direction of this initiative.
  • Daniel Maldonado, Director of Programs at JUVE, has the responsibility to create the application on page web, and coordinate the process of applying for scholarships.
  • Jeannette Neto, Communications Director, is responsible for receiving and verifying compliance with the requirements of each scholarship.
  • Ivan Calderon, Director of Human Resources, is responsible to keep records of attendance at the Leadership Training and Team Building by grantees.
  • Dario Pantosin, Creative Director, has the responsibility to create the promotional material of the ESF to be distributed to the public.
  • Carlos Guevara, President of the Board of Directors, will support the Program Director with the selection of winners, and project execution.

EVALUATION:

The effectiveness of the program will be evaluated through constant contact with the scholarship winners. The students will receive calls every two weeks to understand their current situation and provide personalized assistance. Each student will be requested copies of documents from the university like: the list of classes to be attended in the fall semester, and the progress report. A copy of the report card will be requested at the end of the fall semester to verify that the student completed the semester and maintained a 3.0 GPA or higher.

SUSTAINABILITY:

Organizacion Juventud Ecuatoriana will obtain donations through their own income generated in community and fundraising events. The events will create revenue through sponsorships awarded by companies and institutions (public and private) interested in the opportunity to advertise and support the scholarship fund. JUVE’s goal is to make of The Ecuadorian Scholars Fund a permanent fund, and to expand scholarship opportunities to a more diversified pool of participants from the immigrant community of the Tri-state area.

CONCLUSION:

Since its founding in 2007, Organizacion Juventud Ecuatoriana’s work has been conducted with the cooperation of private donors, both individuals and small businesses, as well as with funds from the own pockets of the members who compose it. The task has not been easy but gradually JUVE has positioned itself within very few recognized group of organizations who share similar goals. Moreover, the organization is characterized by its focus on education and community awareness.

The annual scholarship project, with the creation of the permanent patrimonial fund “Ecuadorian Scholars Fund,” is without a doubt a most ambitious and important project, not only for the organization but for the community as a whole. This importance is due mostly because its success has a long-term and direct positive impact in the life of those who will benefit in participating in the scholarship contest, and those who earn the scholarship.

Private financing has been absolutely necessary to keep this program running. The economic contribution of institutions like yours will meet our goal of creating a permanent charitable fund, thereby increasing the number of students who can benefit from this fund each year. Therefore, we urgently request your support and ask you to join our efforts to build strong professional to build strong communities.

For information on how to participate in this project, please contact the Director of the Project, Carlos Guevara at cguevara@juventudecuatoriana.org

Organización Juventud Ecuatoriana
www.juventudecuatoriana.org/