Scholarship Aimed At Encouraging Students to Complete Their College Degrees at Black Colleges
(Dallas – April 20, 2011) The Tom Joyner Foundation has awarded a dozen scholarships to students at several black colleges in the country as part of its on-going effort to assist these students to complete their degrees.
Since January, the Foundation has recognized students from Talladega College in Talladega, AL, Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, NC and Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, MS. The scholarships are awarded each week to students attending the Tom Joyner Foundation’s “School of the Month” program, which raises money from alumni, friends and other supporters from around the country. The winners are announced on the Tom Joyner Morning Show, which is heard every morning in more than 100 markets around the country, reaching more than eight million listeners.
The Hercules Scholarship is named after Joyner’s father, the late Hercules Joyner, who was a strong supporter of higher education. To be a candidate for the scholarship, students must be male, attend a Foundation “School of the Month”, have a grade point average of at least 3.0, and be a campus leader involved in the community with a career goal toward making a difference in the quality of life for his race. The scholars each receive a scholarship grant of $1,500 that is paid directly to their school to help offset their college expenses.
Tom Joyner, a graduate of Tuskegee Institute, said that the scholarships are greatly needed. On average, the percentage of black male students enrolled at HBCUs is about 37 percent. Joyner wants to help increase that percentage significantly.
In January, the four Talladega students were:
Evan Reddick, a junior biology student from Gadsden, AL. Mr. Bridges is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, serves as the junior class president and is a member of the Student Government Association. After graduation, he plans to become pharmaceutical sales representative. His life’s philosophy is guided by a Frederick Douglass quote: “It is better to be part of a great whole than to be the whole of a small part.”
Emmanuel Pina, a junior biology major from Queens, NY. Mr. Pina is a member of the college’s basketball team, the student government association and is a tutor at a local community center and a peer tutor in biology. After graduation, he plans to pursue a career as a physical therapist. His life’s philosophy is guided by a Malcolm X quote: “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”
James Escortt, a junior public administration major from Chicago, IL. Mr. Escortt is a member of the Talladega College Choir, the Public Administration Society and serves as president of the Student Government Association. During his summers, he volunteers at a center for the elderly and mentors young people at a Chicago church. His life’s motto is: “I ain’t gonna let nobody turn me around.”
Christopher Mosley is an Anniston, AL senior majoring in mathematics with a minor in business management. He is a member of the Society of Black Engineers, Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and serves as a Talladega College Ambassador. After graduation, he plans to become a chemical engineer.
In February, the Johnson C. Smith University Hercules Scholars are:
Anthony Cureton, a sophomore computer science major with a minor in biology, from Warren, MI. Mr. Cureton is a member of the Men’s Cross Country Track Team, served as the tumbling coordinate of the cheerleading squad and is a student ambassador. After graduation, the Honor student plans to become a reconstructive plastic surgeon. He also volunteers with Focus Hope, a tutoring and mentoring program. His daily message is “Say Strong.”
Charles Hauser, a sophomore visual and performing arts/graphics design major, is from Winston Salem, NC.
He volunteers at the International House of Charlotte, works as a production assistant for the Johnson C. Smith broadcast station and is a volunteer for the campus’ theater troupe. After graduation, he plans to get a Master’s Degree in Fine Arts. He lives by the motto, “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”
Howard Estell, a senior social work major, is from Niagara Falls, NY. He mentors other adult students at Johnson C. Smith University, volunteers with the local American Red Cross, works with the Sickle Cell Network and coaches his three daughters’ T-ball teams. After graduation, he plans to work as a social worker and educate people about sickle cell anemia. His life’s philosophy: “Live life victoriously.”
Levi Williams, a Wilson, NC freshman majoring in sports management, plans to become a sports agent, representing professional athletes. He serves as “Mr. Freshman”, is active with the Pre-Alumni Council, is a peer tutor and plans to study in West Africa this summer. He lives by the motto, “Anything I see, I can be.”
In March, the Tougaloo College Hercules Scholars are:
Jervarius Prescott, a senior majoring in political science, is from Cleveland, MS. Mr. Prescott mentors at a local elementary school, is vice president of the Pre-Law Society, a member of Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity and is a member of Alpha Mu Gamma Honor Society. He’s also active in the student chapter of the NAACP. After graduation, he plans to become an attorney. He believes in Philippians 4:13: “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me”.
Jamal Perkins, a sophomore mathematics major with a minor in business, is from Greenwood, MS. He is involved with The Jackson Heart Study program and is member of the tennis team, the Pre-Alumni Council, the student chapter of the NAACP and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society. He plans to become an attorney.
Aaron Light is a Detroit native who is junior majoring in political science. He is a peer tutor, a member of the Tougaloo Pre-Law Society and has interned with the Mississippi State Legislature. After graduation, he plans to become an attorney and political leader. He lives by the philosophy, “Leave the world a better place than you found it.”
Windell C. Blount, a junior majoring in political science, is form Madison, MS. Mr. Blount is involved in numerous activities on campus, including the Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society. The future lawyer says he was greatly inspired by the election of President Barack Obama. He lives by the motto, “The Grass is Me,” which is a line from a poem he wrote in Eighth Grade.
In addition to these there ‘Schools of the Month’ , the remaining schools are: Miles College, Fairfield, AL (April), Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN (May), Wiley College, Marshall, TX (June), Benedict College, Columbia, SC (July), Xavier University, New Orleans, LA (August), Mississippi Valley State University, Itta Bena, MS (September), Central State University, Wilberforce, OH (October) and Oakwood University, Huntsville, AL ( November).
About the Tom Joyner Foundation:
Founded in 1998, the Tom Joyner Foundation has focused on its primary mission of helping to keep students enrolled in Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs). The Foundation has assisted more than 14,000 students and worked with more than 100 HBCUs, raising more than $60 million. Throughout the week, the Foundation announces scholarship winners on the nationally syndicated radio show hosted by its founder, Tom Joyner. Each week, separate financial awards are focused on students who are single parents, high achievers, and distinguished male students at the ‘School of the Month’. The organization’s largest annual fundraiser is its “Fantastic Voyage”™, which is a seven-day, six-night cruise that raises more than $1 million a year.