Have a Coke….and a scholarship!

Marketing and Communications

By Jennifer Sobolewski

First-generation students at BGSU will get a helping hand toward finishing their degree thanks to the Coca-Cola Foundation.

The Foundation has agreed to provide $100,000 to the TRIO Programs. The grant will be distributed over four years and provide scholarships to a number of students in need during that time.

The money will help Student Support Services students who may have run into difficulty continuing at BGSU said Sidney Childs, executive director of TRIO Programs. "Typically they find themselves not having enough money for books or can't finish paying their tuition. These scholarships will help in that area. Also a portion of these funds will be used to support students who are participating in the Ronald McNair Scholars program and are involved in undergraduate research."

TRIO is made up of several educational outreach and academic enrichment programs designed to motivate and assist students to enter and succeed in higher education. It targets first-generation college students who come from families with limited income. Participants are selected according to their potential for academic success.

"We're finding that our students aren't returning because they just don't have enough money or sufficient resources to fully complete the undergraduate research experience. This grant will help soften the blow and provide support so they can continue on," Childs said.

"It's great that we were able to align the TRIO Programs with a specific area of focus for the Coca-Cola Foundation," said Cal Bowers, director of Corporate and Foundation Relations, University Advancement. "We want to continue to be good stewards of the corporate partnerships that we have and make sure they're aware of the impact on our students."

"At The Coca-Cola Company, we believe education has a major impact in building lives and sustaining communities," said Jim Dinderman, Coca-Cola Pittsburgh market unit vice president of sales. "The company created The Coca-Cola First Generation Scholarship Program in recognition of the many students who wanted access to college and the opportunity to change their lives, the lives of their families, and their communities."

Since 1993, the Coca-Cola First Generation Scholarship program has awarded more than $32 million in scholarships, reaching over 2,400 students on more than 460 U.S. campuses.

(Posted August 5, 2013 )