Twenty JAG graduates were selected to receive a $1,000 scholarship and one JAG alum was selected to receive a $2,000 scholarship. These twenty-one outstanding JAG graduates have achieved the high honor of 2017 Smith Scholar. This achievement should be listed in the Smith Scholar’s resume or when applications request a listing of awards, scholarships, or recognitions. Only 20 JAG graduates in the Class of 2017 will be able to use the Smith Scholar designation.
The Kenneth M. Smith Scholarship Fund and the Smith Scholars Program were established by the JAG Board of Directors to recognize the extraordinary leadership and service of the President and Chief Executive Officer of Jobs for America’s Graduates, Inc., Kenneth M. Smith. The number of scholarships to be awarded is dependent on the donations to the Kenneth M. Smith Scholarship Fund. Funding for the KMS Scholarship Fund has come from JAG Board members as well as Western Union Foundation, Lillian Goldman Trust, Strategic Partnerships and CERI. From 2009-2017, the Fund has awarded 113 scholarships for a total of $167,000.
2017 Kenneth M. Smith Application Packet Submissions
·129 JAG seniors and alumni collegiate students submitted electronic Scholarship Applications by February 15 which consisted of the following documents:
-Resume (2 Pages)
-Essay (2 Pages)
-High School Transcript
-Proof of College Application or Acceptance
-Three Reference Letters demonstrating proof of strong academic, leadership, and career readiness performance
-High Resolution Photo
Applications were received from the 23 states: AR (2), AZ (3), GA (2), IA (6), IN (14), KS (5), KY (1), LA (13), ME (7), MI (3), MN (2), MS (9), MO (2), MT (9), NV (19), NJ (3), NM (4), OH (5), SC (9), TN (4), VA (1), VI (5), WV (1).
·There was an increase of 18% in the number of applications received in 2017!
·The number one career field for the third year in a row among the 129 applicants was Health.
2017 Review and Selection Process
·2017 proved to be the most challenging years to review the 129 application packets, assign points, then, make the decision as to which applicants moved forward to be among the Top 40 Applicants.
·Two board members were responsible for reviewing the Top 40 Application Packets and selecting the Top 25 Applicants.
·Two different board members reviewed the Top 25 Application Packets and selected eighteen (21) Smith Scholars.
·2017 Smith Scholars are receiving a letter of congratulations from JAG Governance Committee Chairman Larry Caruso with information to receive their $1,000 scholarship. The letter will also outline responsibilities that Smith Scholars are expected to fulfill during their 2016-2017 collegiate enrollment. This commitment is very important to maintain and expand the Smith Scholars Program.
·A workshop will be held at the 2017 National Training Seminar in Las Vegas for Specialists who are interested in supporting their students that apply for the honor of being recognized as a Smith Scholar as well as receiving the $1,000 scholarship. A panel of Specialists that have been successful in supporting their students will be invited to participate in the workshop.
·The Kenneth M. Scholarship Fund appreciates the 129 applicants that submitted documentation for 2017. Remember—JAG graduates that have not completed their postsecondary degree plans are eligible to apply for a KMS Scholarship as well as high school seniors that are planning to enroll in the fall following graduation.
The 2017 Smith Scholars are:
Candance Smith, LA
Ilse Lopez, AZ
Ivy Capehart, IN
Evelynn Duncan, IN
Rosa Figueroa, IN
Tierra Cooper, KS
La’Brittany Hill, LA
Hailey Lancour, LA
Samatar Hussen, MN
Carl Coleman, MO
Lexus Brown, MS
Alanna Gomoll, MT
David Kelleher, MT
Jasmin Soriano, NV
Shyann Harvey, OH
Kaitlyn Hellman, SD
Tyra Honomichi, SD
Brycen Zephier, SD
Anika Sutter, TN
Quinnah Potter, VI