The application process for the largest national LGBTQ+ scholarship program is opening next week.
On average, LGBTQ students accrue $16,000 more debt on than their heterosexual peers, according to a survey by StudentLoanHero.com.
Queer-identifying students enrolling in an undergraduate or graduate program for the 2019-2020 school year can can apply for a Point Foundation Scholarship, an L.A.-based organization that currently provides financial assistance to 97 students throughout the U.S.
Nearly a third of LGBTQ+ students report being discriminated against based on gender identity or sexual orientation when seeking financial assistance for higher education.
“Despite the constant attacks on our community, our LGBTQ young people are eager to develop the skills they need to fight back against discrimination and become the leaders our country so desperately needs,” Point Foundation Executive Director Jorge Valencia said. ”These students’ determination to create an equitable society that values and celebrates diversity needs to be – and can be – realized with our support.”
To receive a Point Foundation Scholarship, candidates must demonstrate academic excellence, leadership skills, community involvement and financial need. Attention is given to applicants who have experienced marginalization and/or are working to improve the lives of marginalized groups, particularly the LGBTQ community, according to a press release.
“I am bigger than the discrimination that threatens my black Trans existence every day,” said Nik Clark, a social work student at California State University. I am somebody. I’m a leader… I’m going to change the world by living authentically and unapologetically in my truth.”
Applications for the Point Foundation Scholarships open online November 1, 2018 at www.pointfoundation.org/apply.Students may submit their application until 11:59 p.m. PST January 28, 2019. The 2019 class of Point Foundation Scholarship recipients will be announced in June 2019 for LGBTQ Pride Month.