Coast Cares Foundation Supports Local Students and Teachers

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Benjamin Franklin is widely known for his views on education, considering it one of the highest priorities for a productive society. Franklin is quoted as saying: “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” By that measure, the Cal Coast Cares Foundation continues to invest very well, having awarded over $930,000 in scholarships for local students and grants for teachers since its inception in 2015.

The foundation recently announced its latest round of scholarships to be awarded: over $160,000 to college-bound high school seniors, foster students, and current college students in San Diego and Riverside counties. This included 40 local high school students,19 foster students, and 100 local community college and university students. The recipients of first-year foster student scholarships will also be eligible for second-year scholarships by continuing to meet basic requirements.

One of the 2023 scholarship awardees is Leilani Umana, a senior at Hilltop High School in Chula Vista who will be attending the University of California, Irvine.

“When I received the email about being a recipient of the Cal Coast Cares Foundation Scholarship, the first thing I did was run to tell my mom. Not only is receiving this scholarship an honor, but a great opportunity. I’m very grateful to have been selected, and I’ll use this experience as motivation to continue working toward my goals.”

“Our mission at the foundation is to help local students achieve their dream of attaining a college degree and to help educators provide additional innovative learning experiences for their students. This support is crucial as the cost of education and other expenses continue to increase,” said Rene McKee, Cal Coast Credit Union Senior Vice President of Community & Public Relations, and Foundation board member.

The Cal Coast Cares Foundation also awards educator grants annually, ranging from $500 to $2,500 to teachers in San Diego and Riverside counties. These grants support academic projects and curriculum that advance any of the STREAM fields (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) intended to promote lifelong learning.

“Educator grants are vital in supporting student engagement and success. This funding helps teachers bring additional classroom projects and enrichment activities to life. We have seen the impact that grants have on students across all grade levels, and we will continue to support dedicated educators who work tirelessly to inspire their students year after year,” said Todd Lane, president and CEO of Cal Coast Credit Union and Cal Coast Cares Foundation board member.
Educators in K-12 public, private or charter schools, community and state colleges/universities in San Diego or Riverside counties can submit a grant application detailing how they will utilize the funds to enhance student learning.

Information on the Cal Coast Cares Foundation, including guidelines to apply for student scholarships and educator grants, can be found www.calcoastcu.org.

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Esteban Villanueva
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