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Blci elementary studens

Announcing $150,000 Scholarship Challenge Match

 

“We have been impressed with BLCI’s program and its success. We realize the cost of education can be a deterrent for many of these students and we hope the creation of an endowment for scholarships will be able to provide a consistent source of funds and help remove that obstacle.” – Robert and Molly Schulze

In partnership with Robert and Molly Schulze and San Diego Foundation, BLCI is pleased to announce two new matching fund opportunities for a total of $150,000 that are aimed at increasing equity in education by assisting low-income, first-generation students with financial support to ensure academic persistence and success. BLCI partners with San Diego Foundation each year through their Community Scholarships Program, which is the largest non-university scholarship provider in San Diego County and responsible for awarding $4 million in scholarships to over 1,000 students, including BLCI alumni, last year. The existing partnership and San Diego Foundations’ dedication to the community made them a natural partner for these newly established funds.

Robert and Molly’s involvement began with an invitation to attend BLCI’s annual event, Opportunity for Impact and in Robert’s words, “after that night we were hooked.” The event is hosted by BLCI students and highlights their educational goals and what they have learned in the program. Molly was struck by the confidence the students exhibited and attributed it to the skills they learned at BLCI, “I believe that BLCI instills and reinforces confidence. It was incredibly impressive. Both of us believe in the power of education and realize that because of finances it is unattainable for many. We feel extremely fortunate to be able to help and we hope the challenge grant will encourage others to join us in this effort to make higher education more easily attainable for others.”

Like BLCI students, Robert was the first in his family to graduate college and his path to education was not an easy one. Robert’s first scholarship came in the form of aid from the Catholic Church after his father died, leaving his mother to raise four young boys all under the age of 10. His mother began working in the church’s school cafeteria, and the boys attended school for free. Further assistance enabled a spot at an all-boys catholic military school which was followed by college funded through the GI Bill for his service during the Vietnam era. Robert shares that his education would not have been possible without help along the way and now it is his time to give back, “I am one lucky person. Advice to others would be to acknowledge your good fortune, your hard work and achievements to date, and be willing to give back when you have the time and treasure to do so.”

Since that first event, Robert and Molly have provided 15 four-year scholarships to BLCI students, changing the trajectory of lives for generations to come. Their passion for education grows with each graduating class and through the match, they invite you to join their efforts to close the inequity gap in education.

Donors can support a brand-new endowed fund with donations matched up to $100,000, or to support current use scholarships, gifts will be matched up to $50,000.

For more information of to join the 2024 Opportunity for Impact, and to make a difference for the students, please visit www.blci.org.

 

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Kamran Saeed
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