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Students encouraged to apply for more than $4 million in scholarships

By Staff | Jan 8, 2015

Award recipients from Maui show their appreciation at the 2014 Hawaii Community Foundation scholarship event. PHOTO BY THE HAWAII COMMUNITY FOUNDATION.

HONOLULU – The cost of a college degree has more than doubled in the past ten years, and it continues to climb. As a result, there is an increase in applications for scholarships and other financial aid.

Last year, Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) awarded more than $4 million in scholarships to 1,400 students across the state, making it the third largest scholarship provider in Hawaii.

By completing one online application, students are matched to multiple scholarship opportunities and may be eligible to receive more than one award.

“We are extremely grateful to the generous individuals, families and businesses who are committed to helping Hawaii’s students achieve their dream of a higher education,” said Eric La’a, scholarship officer at Hawaii Community Foundation.

“Each new scholarship fund we create is cause for celebration, because the applicants always outnumber the funds available.”

Each student who applies for a scholarship has a unique story. Kristen Gilchrist, scholarship recipient from Maui, met her scholarship donor, Paul Mancini, at an HCF scholarship event earlier this year.

“It’s total strangers like Paul who helped me to believe in myself. This gift reminds me that I’m not the girl who had to overcome issues of self-confidence I’m the girl who can acheive her dreams of becoming a surgeon,” she said.

The application period for HCF scholarships is open. The deadline for all applications is Feb. 19, 2015, at www.hawaiicommunityfoundation.org.

An “Early Application Deadline” on Jan. 30, 2015, will once again be offered. HCF will review the application to ensure that all required supplementary materials have been properly submitted.

Students who do not have all the materials completed will have an opportunity to revise their applications and re-submit before the final deadline, increasing their chances of receiving a scholarship.

On Friday, Jan. 16, from 3 to 4:30 p.m., HCF will host a live question and answer session on Twitter at #askHCF.

For more information on the application process, students may call or e-mail the foundation’s Scholarships Department at (808) 566-5570 and scholarships@hcf-hawaii.org. Content from Twitter discussions will be posted at the HCF Facebook page at facebook.com/HCFscholarships.

With 98 years of community service, the Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) is the leading philanthropic institution in the state. HCF is a steward of more than 650 funds, including more than 190 scholarship funds, created by donors who desire to transform lives and improve communities.

In 2013, $43 million in grants and contracts were distributed statewide, including $4 million in scholarships. HCF also serves as a resource on community issues and trends in the nonprofit sector.