LGBT Scholarship – Collin Higgins Youth Scholarship Award

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two-Spirit, and Queer youth (through age 21) who have bravely stood up to hostility and intolerance based on their gender and/or sexual orientation and triumphed over bigotry through working for LGBT rights and social justice.

We have the opportunity to nominate LGBT rights activists under the age of 21 for a generous grant.

In 2009, two (2) honorees will receive a $10,000 grant which will be presented in New York City at the Trevor Project Benefit Gala in June. Honorees will also receive an expense-paid trip to the 2010 National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Creating Change Conference.

Use the online form to nominate

Deadline – March 2, 2009

For more information, click here

Former Fiji Nationals Invited to Apply for Gates Millennium Scholars Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund

The Fiji Embassy in US should ideally be looking for educated and overeducated Fiji Nationals and recruit them. We have a severe problem of brain drain in the country with ethnic coups and the more educated and privileged Indians settling abroad. And yet, the country does not seem to care!

The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) program has launched the 2008 scholarship and nomination process and the Fiji Embassy in DC has been asked to assist in identifying outstanding students who are former Fiji nationals but now US citizen or permanent residents with demonstrated leadership abilities and significant financial need to apply for the GMS scholarship.

The Gates Millennium Scholars program, established in 1999, was initially funded by a 1 billion dollar grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The goal of GMS is to promote academic excellence and to provide an opportunity for outstanding minority students with significant financial need to reach their highest potential by:
• Reducing financial barriers for African-American, Hispanic American, American Indian/Alaska Native and Asian Pacific Islander American students with high academic and leadership promise who have a significant financial need
• Increasing the representation of these target groups in the disciplines of education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health, and the sciences, where these groups are severely underrepresented
• Developing a diversified cadre of future leaders for America by facilitating successful completion of bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees
• Providing seamless support from undergraduate through doctoral programs, for students selected as Gates Scholars entering target disciplines.

The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) is the administrator of the GMS program. To reach, coordinate, and support Asian Pacific Islander Americans, UNCF has partnered with the Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund to assist in implementing the program.

The Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund (APIASF) is the primary national effort to provide scholarships for deserving Asian & Pacific Islander American students. APIASF currently offers two scholarships for students that will be enrolled for the first-time at colleges or universities. APIASF mission is to forge partnerships building a national Asian and Pacific Islander American Scholarship organization that supports and encourages all Asian and Pacific Islander American students to pursue higher education, thereby developing future leaders who will contribute back to their communities, and ultimately, strengthening.

Writing recently to the Fiji Embassy in Washington Mr Ryan Edgar Outreach Coordinator, Gates Millennium Scholars Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund – APIASF wrote, “We welcome your help in identifying outstanding students with demonstrated leadership abilities and significant financial need to apply for the GMS scholarship.”

Students are eligible to be considered for a GMS scholarship if they:
• Are African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian Pacific Islander American or Hispanic American
• Are a citizen, national or legal permanent resident of the United States
• Have attained a cumulative high school GPA of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale (unweighted) or have earned a GED
• Will be enrolling for the first time at a U.S. accredited college or university as a full-time, degree-seeking, first-year student in fall 2008
• Have demonstrated leadership abilities through participation in community service, extracurricular, or other activities
• Meet the federal Pell Grant eligibility criteria
• Have completed and submitted all three required forms (Nominee Personal Information Form, Nominator Form, and Recommender Form) by the deadline

Former Fiji nationals who are now US citizens or permanent residents and who meet the above criteria may apply for the scholarships. The deadline for online submissions is January 11, 2008 at 11:59 pm EST; Paper submissions must be postmarked no later than December 31, 2007.   You can visit and select the “Apply Online” tab to start the online nomination process. Further information on the Scholarships may be obtained from the following:

Gates Millennium Scholars
P.O. Box 10500
Fairfax, VA 22031-8044
Toll-Free Phone: 1-877-690-4677

Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund
1900 L Street, NW, Suite 210
Washington, DC 20036-5002
Phone. (202) 986-6892
Fax. (202) 530-0643

PL gives $50000 to establish scholarship fund for undocumented

Wealthy entrepeneur has given $50000 to support the Dream of students who are victims of circumstances beyond their control.


DREAM Act should become a reality for kids

Our view: Illegal-immigrant students should not pay for parents’ transgressions

Tucson, Arizona | Published: 09.21.2007

Congress may soon have the opportunity to stop the systematic punishment of illegal-immigrant children for the sins of their parents.

Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., is planning to reintroduce the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act as an amendment to a Pentagon spending bill that is being debated in Congress this week.

The DREAM Act, which was part of the comprehensive immigration-reform bill that failed this summer, would give the children of illegal immigrants a path toward citizenship if they attend college for at least two years or serve honorably in the military for at least two years.

The measure would be good for the United States, as it would boost student ranks in states like Arizona, where young illegal immigrants who want to attend college often cannot afford to because of state laws. The act would also encourage young illegal immigrants to pursue higher education or careers in the military.

The measure would be especially significant in Arizona because state voters last year approved Proposition 300, which requires illegal-immigrant students to pay out-of-state tuition rather than the more affordable in-state rate.

University tuition for students classified as in-state residents costs roughly $5,000 a year, while out-of-state tuition is more than three times higher at about $16,000 per year.

As we have stated on these pages previously, Proposition 300 created a mean-spirited law that unfairly punishes young adults who entered the country illegally but involuntarily.

The United States is a nation of laws, but children should not be punished for the actions of their parents.

Many illegal-immigrant students who are of college age came to this country as toddlers or grade-schoolers. The United States is the only country they know. For them, Mexico, to give one example, would be the foreign country, even though they might be Mexican citizens.

Proposition 300 viciously makes it harder for these students to become well-educated, taxpaying adults.

Some individuals and groups have stepped up to help illegal-immigrant students pursue college degrees.

Arizona State University President Michael Crow, for one, has earmarked funds from private donors to help about 200 illegal-immigrant students meet the higher tuition costs, the Arizona Republic reported.

However, state Treasurer Dean Martin, who as a legislator was the main proponent of Proposition 300, is asking for the Board of Regents to investigate whether Crow is following state law in assisting the students.

University of Arizona spokesman Johnny Cruz said six students affected by Proposition 300 are receiving more aid so that they can remain in school. UA President Robert Shelton said the money is coming from private donations.

Meanwhile, Tucson businessman Paul Lindsey has donated $50,000 to establish a scholarship fund that will help illegal-immigrant students attend Pima Community College.

A full, 15-credit-hour course load at Pima College costs about $700 for in-state students and about $3,500 for out-of-state students.

We applaud the efforts to help illegal-immigrant students who might otherwise not be able to earn college degrees and we are hopeful those private efforts expand.

However, Proposition 300 could be effectively negated if the DREAM Act is approved by Congress. We encourage Arizona’s senators and representatives to support Sen. Durbin’s amendment.

The United Negro College Fund has a slogan, “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste.” That slogan should apply to young people of all races.