By ENRIQUE MARTINEZ GUERRERO, Ranger Reporter:
The Amarillo College Foundation is gearing up to award scholarship money, so now is the time for qualified students to apply for Foundation scholarships. The AC Foundation was created in 1964 by Leon Hoyt Jr., who saw there was a real need to help students go to college. Today the nonprofit and tax-exempt foundation supports the college and its students in numerous ways.
“We raise money for scholarships, for programs and institutional needs,” Tracy Dougherty, Foundation co-executive director, said.
The Foundation accepts many forms of gifts from individuals, groups and businesses. “We have businesses that help us with equipment and companies that help us build new buildings. In general, people see what Amarillo College is doing for students and want to help us meet our mission,” Kathy Dowdy, the Foundation’s other co-executive director, said.
The Foundation awarded about $1,000,000 in scholarships to about 1,600 students last year. One of those recipients was Jacob Reyna, a dental hygiene major.
“It was really hard for me to even think about going to college. It seemed impossible but then I heard about the Foundation,” said Reyna. “The Foundation changed my life because college was just a dream for me but, thanks to this program and the people in it, now here I am.”
Applicants, including current AC students, must provide a transcript from their most recent school. Students need to be enrolled in at least six hours, have a minimum 2.0 GPA and write a 200 word essay about themselves and why they want to go to college.
Applicants are encouraged to share personal experiences and explain their challenges, dreams and goals.
Students who want to apply should go to actx.edu/foundation. The Foundation began accepting applications March 1 and the sooner qualified students apply, the more likely they will be to receive funding.
“I encourage everyone to submit the application as close to March 1 as possible,” Dougherty said, noting that most of the scholarships will be given out by the beginning of May. Some of the scholarships are for certain majors and some are for academic excellence. Dougherty said that students can also apply for financial aid on top of scholarship awards.
Hannah Brouse, a medical lab technology major, said she missed the scholarship deadline last year but will be sure to submit her application on time this year. “I encourage everyone not to wait until the last minute to apply because this is a great opportunity to get help,” she said.