Point Foundation Opens 2011 Application Season & Announces New Named Scholarships

Dec 09, 2010, 07:00 ET from Point Foundation

Toyota Financial Services, Darden Restaurants and George Benes MD & Michael Mallee EdD offer new Named Scholarships

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 9, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Point Foundation (Point), the nation's largest scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students of merit, announces the opening of its 2011 application season starting December 10, 2010.  Students who will be enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs for the 2010-11 school year are eligible to apply for the prestigious, multi-year scholarships. The application deadline for this year's scholarships is February 11, 2011.

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2010 Point Scholar Kyle Inselman who is pursuing a BFA in film studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder said, "By working with my fellow scholars and everyone in the Point family, I'm able to flourish as a leader playing my part for the larger movement, and encourage my fellow scholars to accomplish the same. This truly is a community of support and encouragement, and having it gives me the confidence to pursue my individual and collaborative goals, whether they are through my film work, advocacy, or more."

Point's rigorous selection process for its prestigious scholarships is highly competitive and requires demonstrated academic excellence, leadership skills, community involvement and financial need. Particular attention is paid to students who have lost the financial and social support of their families and/or communities as a result of revealing their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.  The selection process begins with on-line applications and concludes with face-to-face interviews with selected finalists in April 2011.

For the first time, others can also recommend a deserving student by accessing www.pointfoundation.org/recommendastudent.html.

The average amount of annual support devoted to each scholar is between $22,000-$31,000, which includes mentoring, leadership and media training and direct financial support. Point's multifaceted support extends far beyond the scholars' time in school as Point provides leadership training and mentoring.

Attending some of the nation's foremost higher educational institutions, Point Scholars agree to maintain a high level of academic performance and to give back to the LGBT community through the completion of an individual community service project each year.  In addition, scholars are matched with mentors from the professional world through Point's Mentoring Program; mentors lend their professional expertise and career guidance and become important role models to scholars. The Mentoring Program and Point's professional support network equip scholars with skills to ensure a lifetime of leadership, success and well-being.

Since its inception in 2001, Point Foundation has invested over $4.8 million in the education of outstanding LGBT students. The organization's growth over a short period of time is noteworthy.  In its first year, Point received 268 applications and granted eight scholarships.  In 2010, approximately 1,641 applications were submitted of which 25 students were granted scholarships. As of June 2010, there are 66 Point Scholars currently enrolled in school and 97 Point Alumni.

Point Foundation's Named Scholarship Program allows individuals, organizations, foundations and corporations to provide substantial support to Point Foundation by honoring the name of an individual or organization and to demonstrate a public commitment to Point's vision of valuing education, leadership and diversity.

A Named Scholarship is a commitment of $100,000 over four years. This gift can be made as a one-time gift or through a commitment of four consecutive $25,000 annual installments.

Three new Named Scholarships have been created this year from the generous donations by the following corporations, individuals and/or supportive organizations: George Benes M.D. & Michael Mallee EdD, Darden Restaurants and Toyota Financial Services.  They join Point's existing Named Scholarships: Jan Aronson, Thomas & Sara Branton, The Calamus Foundation, Walter M. Decker, Bob Fennell, Dr. Joan W. Shelley Fernandez, Allan Gilmour & Eric Jirgens, Gregory Grosh, HBO, Joan R. Heller, Kevin Hummer, Johnson & Johnson, Lawrence King/Jeffrey FashionCares, Bryan L. Knapp, Jonathan D. Lewis, Phyllis Mandler & Gary Elden, Minton-Spidell, Point Honors LA & NY, Casey Sakir, Rand Skolnick, Paul W. Speier, Time Warner, University of Phoenix, and Wells Fargo.

For additional information on Point Foundation, please visit: http://www.pointfoundation.org.

For information on how to apply for a Point Scholarship, please visit: http://www.pointfoundation.org/apply.html.

SOURCE Point Foundation