COLUMBIA, Mo. - The City of Columbia is teaming up with an insurance organization to give out three $1,000 grants to incoming college freshmen.
Columbia is working with the Shelter Insurance Foundation to distribute the annual Success Grants to Columbia teenagers.
In 2016, Columbia identified neighborhoods that could benefit from extra resources, which include the Columbia Police Department Outreach Unit. City officials created strategic plans for these areas to help improve social equality, public safety, economy, infrastructure and operational excellence.
Columbia Police Department Lt. Geoff Jones said he hopes to mentor Columbia high school students to become community leaders.
"So that when I'm gone and others who are trying to carry this torch are gone, we have very qualified, competent people who started off even in high school."
Funds from the grants will go toward classes at a two- or four-year accredited colleges, universities or technical schools. Students can use the money to help cover tuition, fees, books and housing.
To qualify for a Success Grant, a candidate must meet the following qualifications:
- Live in one of the identified neighborhoods
- Have a financial need
- Be of excellent character
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Have a 2.5 GPA or higher at the time of high school graduation
- Have an interest in making their neighborhoods safer and more vibrant
- Be interested in creating a project for the neighborhood that promotes positive interaction while being mentored by the Columbia Police Community Outreach Unit or by a city staff member
- Plans to start post-secondary education in the fall of 2017
You can find an application for the Success Grants by clicking on this link.
Applications and high school transcripts are due to Brian Jones at Shelter Insurance or mailed to the following address by 5 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13.
Shelter Grant Review Committee
c/o Brian Jones
Shelter Insurance Corporate Office
1817 W. Broadway
Columbia, MO 65218
A review committee will go over the applications in early March. At least one person from each identified neighborhood will be selected for a personal interview. Students will complete their projects in June and July. A final project report is due on Aug. 1.