BELLE GLADE, Fla. — A new scholarship fund could be a life-changing opportunity for Belle Glade students planning to attend Palm Beach State College.
The Boys and Girls Club of Palm Beach is now offering the Belle Glade Teen Center Scholarship, which will cover up to $1,500 per year towards an associate degree or career certification.
The Glades make up some of the highest unemployment rates in the county, but the President and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach Jeane Miranda hopes the scholarship could pave the way for the younger generation.
"That's what we wanted to do, we want to make sure that every child that walks through our doors not only graduates from high school but has a plan for the future," Miranda said.
Members at the Smith and Moore Family Teen Center in Belle Glade can apply for the scholarship starting February 14. Applicants need to be an active member of the Smith and Moore Family Teen Center for at least 2 years, have completed at least 20 volunteer hours at the Club and have a 2.0 GPA or higher.
Applicants also need to submit an essay describing how the scholarship will benefit their educational journey.
Just a year after opening their new Teen Center, leaders at the organization say the new scholarship is furthering their efforts to focus on science and technology course work. The Teen Center focuses on jobs available locally and higher paying jobs.
"This is all in the STEM area," Miranda said. "So, we're talking about the science, technology, engineering and for them to study math which would open up the world to them">
In Belle Glade, nearly half of people are living in poverty, according to Career Source.
A $20,000 donation from the new local company Finfrock is kickstarting the program, but they are looking for more contributions to keep the program going. Click here to donate.