May 16: Excellence in Education Banquet

THE EDUCATION FUND AWARDS $100,000 IN COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS
West County Kids’ College Dreams Come True

The Ed. Fund is giving out over $100,000 in college scholarships. The 26 West County high school seniors represent every comprehensive high school in West Contra Costa Unified School District. All winners will be honored on Friday, May 16h at The Ed. Fund’s 20th Annual Excellence in Education Banquet in Berkeley, California.

Scholarships range from $2,000 to $5,000; some are renewable for up to four years of college. With college costs rising (average fees for a UC is $24,000 per year), many families have no hope of giving their kids the one thing that might most influence their future success in life. The recipients, who have ambitions that range from choreography to opening a free health clinic for poor children, will have a chance to start this fall at the college of their choice. Of this year’s 26 winners, 14 have weighted GPAs above 4.0.

Financial need is a pre-requisite to getting funds, and all applicants must demonstrate their drive and their ability to overcome obstacles. “These are the attributes of people who are most likely to finish college”, said Jennifer Henry, Executive Director of The Ed. Fund. The 20th Annual Excellence in Education banquet is a great way for people to show their support of these aspiring students and is open to the public. The evening includes an elegant dinner and live auction and honors teachers, staff, volunteers and students across West Contra Costa County.

The people who make these scholarships possible are individuals who know the value of college for young people, their families, and their community. Community leader Antonio Medrano believes these donors are heroes, and praises The Ed. Fund for seeking them out. “What The Ed. Fund does is a great gift to the community,” said Antonio.

Who: The West Contra Costa Public Education Fund (The Ed. Fund)
What: 20th Annual Excellence in Education Banquet
Where: Doubletree Hotel, 200 Marina Blvd., Berkeley
When: Friday, May 16, 2008, 5:30 p.m.
Cost: $75 per person; $25 for WCCUSD students
RSVP: edfundwest@sbcglobal.net or (510) 233-1464

Media interested in attending the event may contact Jennifer Henry, (510) 233.1464.

About The West Contra Costa Public Education Fund (The Ed. Fund)
Founded in 1983, The Ed. Fund is a non-profit, public education fund dedicated to inspiring student achievement, encouraging commitment to lifelong learning, honoring and supporting teachers, and building community partnerships committed to public education in West Contra Costa County. For more information call (510) 233.1464 or visit http://www.edfundwest.org