Ten students with the University of Houston's Academic Achievers Program have extra help to pay for school thanks to a generous donation from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation. Already longtime partners, the Bank of America Charitable Foundation donated $100,000 to the program over the next two years. The funds will be used for student scholarships.
"At Bank of America, we strive to help students achieve their dreams of obtaining a higher education," said Kim Ruth, Houston market and Texas state president of Bank of America. "We are proud to partner with the University of Houston's Academic Achievers Program by providing assistance to these students to build an educational foundation for their future careers."
Academic Achievers is part of the UH Center for Mexican American Studies (CMAS) and guides at-risk students from high school through college. Often, these students are the first in their families to pursue higher education. Through mentoring, structured study halls and guidance from Houston leaders and professionals, Academic Achievers students complete college at a higher rate and move into their professional lives quicker.
"This is a very important grant because it allows us to support more students," said Rebeca Trevino, program manager of the Academic Achievers Program. "We will be increasing the number of students we support for fall 2011 and will be increasing the yearly scholarship. It really makes a significant difference for them all."
The 10 students, all juniors, will receive an additional $1,500 as Bank of America Scholars. These students were selected for their academic excellence throughout their involvement with the program. This additional funding will assist the Bank of America Scholars in completing their academic studies in a timelier manner.
"I am very proud and thankful to be a Bank of America Scholar," said UH student Fatima De Leon. "This scholarship puts graduation day more in focus for me, which puts me closer to becoming a professional in my community." De Leon is pursuing a double major in marketing and supply chain management and aims to graduate in 2012.
The Bank of America Charitable Foundation has been a supporter of the Academic Achievers Program since 2005 when it gave a similar gift. To date, its generosity has helped more than 30 students complete their education. Additionally, Bank of America historically has assisted Houston students in developing leadership and professional skills through summer internships.
"Bank of America and the Center for Mexican American Studies have similar goals and that is to ensure that Latino students who enroll in college graduate," said Professor Tatcho Mindiola, director of CMAS. "This is in the best interest of our community as well as our nation. We are very grateful for their support and partnership. It is truly making a difference in lives of our students."
For more information on the UH Center for Mexican American Studies and the Academic Achievers' Program visit http://www.class.uh.edu/CMAS/index.asp
For more information on Academic Achievers students listen to UH Moment: http://app1.kuhf.org/houston_public_radio-news-display.php?articles_id=1276638716