Illinois State University has received a $1 million gift to establish a scholarship program as part of the its newly public Redbirds Rising fundraising campaign.
The program will provide scholarships to students facing significant financial challenges, such as those with incarcerated parents or those in the foster care system. The gift is a result of a partnership between ISU and Give Something Back, a nonprofit providing scholarships to students in need.
“Access and affordability to a high-quality (education) is a priority for both our organizations,” ISU President Larry Dietz said. “This investment in young people will truly make a difference for generations of Redbirds.”
ISU’s involvement in First Star, a program that prepares foster children for college, helped secure the partnership. ISU joined the program in 2017.
ISU’s First Star Academy program director, Deneca Avant, said the program will help her students feel more comfortable furthering their education.
“Access to (this) scholarship provides a further incentive for our graduates to achieve their goals of securing a college degree, knowing they have the financial support to pursue an education without the additional monetary burden,” Avant said.
The $1 million will fund tuition and room and board for up to 50 students.
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