Benwood Foundation Announces “Bridging the Gap” Scholarships To Help Local Students Graduate From College

Thursday, May 28, 2020

The Benwood Foundation has established a scholarship program to commemorate its 75th anniversary and will award $300,000 in scholarships to a group of Hamilton County students over the next four years.

Benwood will partner with Public Education Foundation and Hamilton County Schools to support high school seniors through their college journey. Benwood will annually award last dollar scholarships of up to $5,000 per student to cover unmet college costs, as well as provide summer internships and other travel and enrichment experiences to ensure these “Benwood Scholars” succeed at every stage of their collegiate journey.  Community leaders and Benwood Foundation trustees will serve as mentors to the Scholars.

The ultimate goal of this scholarship program is to support students during their educational journey and learn what experiences ensure that all students--especially those from the most challenging backgrounds--can reach their full potential and be prepared for success, officials said.

“For the past 75 years, The Benwood Foundation has worked to ensure that all Chattanoogans have the opportunity to prosper. Our trustees want to honor this work by supporting students throughout their college career. Today, there is an urgent need in our community, and students need support now more than ever,” said Sarah Morgan, Benwood Foundation president.

“COVID-19 has drastically changed the experience for 2020 graduating seniors across the country. This scholarship comes at a time when students have great need for support. During this time, we can look at the accomplishments and resiliency of these students for hope of a bright future for our community. We are excited that Benwood Foundation is partnering with PEF and giving hope to students through this scholarship,” said Stacy Lightfoot, PEF’s vice president of College and Career Success.

Scholarship awards will vary by recipient and will be based on the unmet costs for room & board, tuition, fees, books or transportation. The resources will “bridge the gap” of costs that have not been covered after institutional, state and federal financial aid and other outside scholarships are applied. The scholarship is a need-based scholarship and is renewable for up to four years.

The scholarship is offered to students graduating in 2020 from the following Hamilton County Schools: Brainerd High School, East Ridge High School, Hixson High School, The Howard School, Red Bank High School and Tyner Academy. Students must have a 2.75 GPA, submit two letters of recommendation and demonstrate perseverance and leadership.

Interested students can learn more and apply at pefchattanooga.org.  The deadline for applications is June 12.


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