The Greater Oakland Charter Chapter of the American Business Women’s Association is looking to give a scholarship and a nomination for a grant to two female students in the area who represent the group’s ideals.
Established in 2000, the local chapter operates as a part of a nationwide nonprofit organization established over 60 years ago.. It has national conferences, where members from different chapters can meet people from around the U.S. who have the same interests.
Jeni Carino, one of three education chairs for the chapter, said the association revolves around women working professional jobs who want to learn and grow both personally and professionally. She said after going to just one meeting, she was hooked.
“I joined in October of 2015, and it’s been a great experience,” she said. “You get the chance to meet so many new people.”
While the Greater Oakland chapter only has one student right now, Carino said students are more than welcome to join at a discounted rate. The chapter meets at the Crowne Plaza in Auburn Hills once a month. However, students don’t have to be members to apply for scholarships.
This year, the group is offering a chance for female students to win a grant funded by the national organization and an impact scholarship funded by the local chapter.
Jo Ann Huebner, the treasurer and another chair of education, said the awarding process of the grant is different than the average scholarship.
With $2,000 up for grabs, each chapter gets to nominate someone, and three grants are distributed per district. Each district is made up of several states. After that, the national headquarters picks the winners from the nominations. Greater Oakland’s 2015 nominee was selected to win the grant, but every chapter sends who it thinks is the best fit for the grant.
Applicants for the grant must meet a variety of requirements, including being of junior standing, having a 3.0 GPA or higher and being able to provide at least three recommendation letters. The full list of requirements can be found on the website, and the deadline to apply for the grant is June 1.
The impact scholarship is a little different. Huebner said any students going to a four-year accredited college can apply for it. Class standing is not a factor, and it is also $2,000.
“It’s the same basic process to apply,” she said. “But the difference is that this will be awarded to someone who applies to us. At least three eligible applicants must be received by the chapter. Our national organization will select a person from the three or more applicants submitted by the chapter.”
Also unlike the grant, the deadline for the scholarship is March 15. Though most of the requirements are the same, the deadline for this comes quicker.
Huebner said that though applicants don’t have to be members, they are always looking for new faces to join the association.
“Our members come from a variety of backgrounds,” she said. “At our last meeting, I noticed that almost everyone works in a different industry, so we really welcome anyone.”