Scholars Latino Initiative’s director of development Christopher Clymer Kurtz first learned about SLI in 2018 when he interviewed one of its scholars, Mary, for a WMRA report about inequalities in education. He recently reconnected with Mary, and wrote this update. READ MORE
Educators shared why they support SLI, SLI scholars provided testimonials, and donors, eager to empower local Latino/x students who dream of going to college, responded during the 2020 Great Community Give.
More than 70 people and educators who pledged matching funds donated more than $11,000 (in most cases giving extra to cover platform and payment fees!).
Thanks to many generous people in the SLI community, donations of more than $5,000 plus $5,000 in matching funds surpassed the Giving Tuesday Now goal of $10,000, which will support two SLI scholarship awards!
This campaign has ended, but gifts of support for SLI scholarships are welcome anytime at vasli.org/donate.
Intense grit and determination are staple attributes of SLI scholars, to an inspiring degree. In this pandemic, perhaps all of us need more of these – along with copious amounts of moral support and friendship.
Even as schools are closed for the academic year and college admissions offices are figuring out how to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, SLI is committed to its scholars.
Until we can again serve our scholars in person, we’re doing what we can – through social media and online writing and reading assignments, for example. And donors continue to step up to fund the college scholarships, computer awards, and dual enrollment tuition assistance that SLI scholars are counting on for this fall.
Cheer for SLI scholars by writing words of encouragement to them in the comments for this Facebook post. Maybe you know what it’s like to be the first in your family to pursue higher education. Maybe you admire determination. Maybe college was a life changing experience for you, and you wish the same for SLI’s graduating seniors.
Your heartfelt words will be meaningful. Go for it.
Estimados Participantes de SLI, Alumnos y Donantes, Mientras que nos encontramos en esta época de pandemia, la junta directiva de SLI ha estado pensando mucho en todos ustedes. Esperamos que sus familias estén bien de salud y les deseamos lo mejor durante esta crisis….VER MÁS
Dear SLI scholars, alumni, and supporters, As we each face challenges in this time of pandemic, you especially have been on our minds. We hope for good health for you and your families, and for renewed energy for pursuing your goals…..READ MORE
For the tenacious SLI scholars preparing to be the first in their families to attend college, the coronavirus pandemic is merely another source of deeply felt anxiety and uncertainty.
“The social uncertainty and isolation of our coronavirus moment is not too far off the everyday reality of many SLI students and their families,” said SLI program director and JMU professor Carlos Aleman. “The first-generation students we’re working with are truly exceptional in their abilities to move toward college given everything else that’s happening in their lives.”
“SLI has always been a community of people that care for me and encourage me to reach out when I need help,” said SLI alum and supporter Rebecca, who is studying economics and political science at Tidewater Community College.
Thank you for being part of the community that surrounds SLI’s highly motivated and determined scholars even – especially – in this difficult time.
Congratulations to SLI alum Maria Garcia Martinez (Harrisonburg High class of 2017), who has been accepted into the nursing program at Blue Ridge Community College. This video about her was created when she was in high school:
Even though soccer had always been a big part of his life, the suspense was nerve wracking. SLI scholar Everth had never before tried out for a school athletic team, and that February night, along with 60 or 70 hopeful peers, he watched as the coaches filled their rosters. READ MORE
…Sylvia Whitney Beitzel, Home School Liaison, Harrisonburg City Public Schools …Evelin Gonzalez Espinoza, Financial Consultant, Everence Financial …Larry Miller, retired banking executive and former SLI Director of Development …Bryan Pearce-Gonzales, PhD, Professor of Hispanic Studies, Shenandoah University …Christopher von Rueden, PhD, Associate Professor of Leadership Studies, University of Richmond …Carl Rush, Division Equity Specialist, Winchester Public Schools