Ventura College Foundation Revises Scholarship Application Requirements; Removes Barriers To Applying

The Ventura College Foundation has revised its scholarship application requirements. The changes are designed to remove barriers to applying. The revisions were approved by the foundation board and are effective immediately.

"We reviewed our scholarship program outcome data, researched best practices for scholarship providers along the lines of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and conducted a student forum to receive feedback from students who had previously gone through the scholarship application process. We heard from many that the old requirements presented unrealistic barriers that prevented them from applying," says Amy Cherot, chair of the foundation's Scholarships & Grants Committee.  "We're always looking for ways to better serve Ventura College students and to improve diversity and equity in our scholarship application process."

One of the significant changes to the scholarship application requirements is that instead of requiring applicants to have completed 12 Ventura College credits by the end of the fall semester in which they are applying, they will have had to complete at least six credits. Credits earned in previous semesters at the college count toward the minimum unit requirement.

"The scholarship program was never intended to only support full-time students," says Anne Paul King, foundation executive director. "Many students attend part-time while working full-time. This change opens the door to many outstanding students who can't afford to take on a full course load."

Instead of requiring applicants to secure two letters of recommendation to apply and be eligible for scholarships, the foundation will instead require one. Students can still submit two. The foundation will review both and select the strongest recommendation letter when evaluating the application.

Previously, the foundation required dual enrollment students (those who are enrolled in high school and Ventura College classes simultaneously) to attend Ventura College upon high school graduation. This old policy prevented dual enrollment students who had completed all their general college education requirements while in high school from receiving foundation scholarships if they were ready to transfer to a four-year university directly from high school. Now, dual enrollment students can apply for the foundation scholarship program regardless of whether they are continuing their education at Ventura College or immediately transferring to a four-year university.

"Many of our scholarships provide funds for students moving on to four-year universities," says King. "Students who have completed all their Ventura College transfer courses while in high school are now eligible for these types of scholarships."

Scholarship applications are being accepted through January 21, 2022. For more information, go to Virtual workshops on scholarship requirements and how to apply are taking place throughout November and December.