Apply for Point Foundation scholarships (PRNewsfoto/Point Foundation)

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students enrolling in undergraduate or graduate programs for the 2018-2019 academic year are encouraged to apply online for a Point Foundation Scholarship. Point Foundation is the nation’s largest scholarship-granting organization for LGBTQ students of merit and currently is providing financial assistance and programmatic support to 98 students.

Applications open online at www.pointfoundation.org/apply on November 1, 2017.

Students may submit the application until 11:59 p.m. PST January 29, 2018.

A short application information video is available online.

“Point Foundation provides support and opportunities for LGBTQ students who would have had a significantly more difficult path—or a totally nonexistent path—to higher education,” said Jorge Valencia, Executive Director & Chief Executive Officer of Point Foundation. “Our scholars often tell us that becoming part of Point was pivotal in their lives because it was the first time they ever felt accepted and supported.”

Point’s scholarship support addresses the particular challenge LGBTQ students face paying for college: 83% of LGBTQ students are using their own money for school, compared to 53% of all first-year college students. Even then, about 70% of LGBTQ students need financial assistance to start school, compared to 44% of all first-year students.

The selection process for awarding Point Foundation Scholarships requires candidates to demonstrate academic excellence, leadership skills, community involvement, and financial need. Attention is given to applicants who lost financial and social support as a result of revealing their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.

Once selected, each scholar is paired with a mentor and participates in leadership development training with fellow Point Scholars. Point Scholars also give back to the LGBTQ community by completing an individual community service project each year. After graduation, scholars become part of Point’s growing alumni network, connecting them with caring individuals and professional contacts in a wide range of fields throughout the nation.

“Point Foundation is a community of survivors – people who have survived a world that tells them that they are unwanted or unworthy or ‘lesser than’ just because of who they are,” said 2017 Janssen Infectious Diseases Scholar Omar Salman, who is studying at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine. “But thanks to the resilient LGBTQ+ community that is Point, we are thriving together.”

Introductions to current Point Scholars are on Point’s YouTube channel. The activities and accomplishments of Point Scholar and Alumni are featured on the ViewPoint blog.

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