Record Dollar Total Awarded to Local Students in 17th Year of a Program

Supporting East Chicago Graduates, Continuing Education Students

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EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (June 13, 2014) – The Foundations of East Chicago (FEC) awarded a record amount of scholarship funds to a record number of students in a ceremony recently held at East Chicago Central High School.


The organization – which began offering academic scholarships totaling $20,000 in 1998 – this year provided a total of $190,000 in scholarships to 62 students from six regional high schools and adult continuing education students. The grantees received scholarships ranging from two-year awards for students attending Ivy Tech Community College to four-year renewable scholarships worth as much as $6,000 annually following an intense application process that began in early 2014. 


“We were so impressed by the applicants this year that we felt obligated to recognize a record number of students with the largest amount the Foundation has ever awarded in a single year,” noted Russell G. Taylor, executive director of the FEC. “And for the first time, our Ivy Tech Honors Scholars will receive scholarships for two years of attendance at that college.”


All 62 academic award recipients were recognized at a special ceremony that included an inspirational speech by Dr. Katya Valdez Chartre, who cited her FEC scholarship in 2000 as playing a crucial role in her success in becoming a family practice physician in Chicago.


Additionally, Dr. Chandra Gill – educator and founder and CEO of Blackademically Speaking – encouraged students to recognize their power to change the world. Earlier this school year, she addressed and worked with a group of Central students in support of the Gates Millennium Scholars program.


About the Foundations of East Chicago  


The Foundations of East Chicago is dedicated to leading social change as it seeks to strengthen and improve the quality of life in East Chicago through strategic grant and scholarship programs. Since 1997, it has granted over $34 million and issued more than 700 scholarships worth a total of nearly $5.4 million. It also has invested in more than 250 agencies that serve and support the community.


Editors: The names of this year’s FEC scholarship recipients follow.


  • $6,000 winners: Leslie Ann Alanis, Kaylyn Alyssa Anderson, Aliyah Iman Banks, Paola Catalina Castaneda, Odalys Cubillo, D’Angelo Quentin Gonzalez, Ahmad Abdul Muhammad, Marissa Rose Radziwiecki, Destiney LaTeash Reed, Emmanuel Angel Roldan, Tiara Annette Ware, Makeda Darzuree Winfield, Lattrice Paris Young.


  • $4,000 winner: Keon Kendall Brown.


  • $2,500 winners: Kayla Roxamme Cast, Brenda Josephine Flores, Ledeja Mone’t France, Maria Corina Garcia, Sienna Katrina Gonzalez, Gustavo Baltazar Martinez, Joanna Mendoza, Cody James Porter, Ricky Devon Readus, Andrea Rivera, Alisha Michelle Smith.


  • $1,500 winners: April ashawnte Allen, Vydell D’Adrian Belcher, Jalen Jmaris Blackmon, Marche Louise Cadenhead, Roviyin Devante Carson, Serina Marie Feliciano, Justin Daniel Figueroa, Alexis Figueroa, Brandon Gabriel Gonzalez, Juan Antonio Nunez, Melinda Maria Perales, Abigail Pineda, Justin Niel Pruitt, Juan Pablo Quintana, Seraj Michael Qureshi, Andrea Yunuen Ramirez, Sabrina Mercedes Ridgell, Diana Rosas, Deontae Marshon Rush, Ariana Bri’an Williams.


  • $6,400 American Honors winners: Carlos Eduardo Garcia, David Madriz Chavez, Alesander Vera, Diana Maria Vega.


  • $3,400 Ivy Tech winners: Denisse Alejandra Camacho, Shandisha Talynee Pollard, Catherina Abigail Ruiz.


  • Non-Traditional, Adult Scholarships (up to $1,000): Amy Cassandra Aguilera, Joel Aaron Arreguin, Amelia D. Carrillo, Brian T. Causey, Andres Thomas Cavazos, Francesca Evette Cooley, Lora Christine Kokot, David Andrew Ramirez, Jr., Scott Steven Upshaw, Jr.