By Corinne Murdock |
A nonprofit promised an entire grade of elementary school students free college tuition should they graduate from high school. Not only will the tuition be covered: books as well as room and board will be covered as well.
The 63 third graders attend Phoenix’s Bernard Black Elementary School in Roosevelt School District No. 66. A nonprofit in Avondale, the Rosztoczy Foundation, raised the funds through their College Promise program. The foundation has also provided scholarships for Hungarian students to research with U.S. college professors.
The students must graduate from their elementary school, then graduate from a school within the Phoenix Union High School District. The students may apply their tuition at any one of Arizona’s state universities or community colleges. They also have the option to attend a private or public post-secondary institution outside of Arizona, with the possibility of receiving funding up to the maximum available to students attending comparable in-state universities or community colleges.
While in college, the student must maintain a 2.0 GPA to continue receiving the scholarship. They must also be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours each semester, with regular progress toward a degree. The scholarship may only apply for four consecutive years. If the student finishes their undergraduate before four years are up, they may apply the remaining scholarship toward their graduate school fees and costs.
The third graders were surprised with the news at an assembly at the end of April.
This isn’t the first time that the Rosztoczy Foundation has done this: in 2012, they awarded about 80 third graders in the Michael Anderson School within the Avondale Elementary District with the same scholarship. They would have graduated high school last year, and those enrolled in college will be completing their freshman year this month.