|Scholarships awarded to under-represented students|
December 1, 2004
Berry and Vera Lee Clanton Endowed Scholarship Fund, established in 2000,
provides financial assistance to disadvantaged students and helps fulfill
part of SFSU's mission: to provide broadly accessible higher education.
This year, the scholarship was awarded to students who otherwise might not have had access to quality higher education. They are: Diane Bhachu, Janien Harrison, Kokeetia Mcelwee, Kyesha Thompson and Cindy Alexander.
For some of the recipients, the scholarship means more than just financial assistance.
Diane Bhachu, who is dyslexic, is determined to complete her bachelor's degree in psychology and counseling this fall. An Oakland resident, Bhachu believes the scholarship will help toward her goal of obtaining a master's degree in gerontology and opening a resource center for seniors in her area.
"I've worked really hard to reach this goal," Bhachu said. "Receiving this scholarship is a sign of appreciation. It's helping me stay focused on my goals."
Janien Harrison, also from Oakland, volunteers as a peer counselor at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center while working toward her bachelor's degree in psychology. Harrison has been going through a long recovery period following a car accident in 1999. Although the accident left her partially paralyzed, she remains positive and active in her community, helping people with physical and mental challenges.
"One of the beautiful things about being disabled is that while society is on fast forward, disability lets you acquire a sense of peace, where you understand your limited abilities and do things at your own pace," Harrison said. "This scholarship motivates me to be as proactive as I can be so that I can continue working as hard as I have been."
Berry Clanton was one of the first African Americans hired as a longshoreman on the San Francisco waterfront. Although he was not a college-educated man, Clanton, along with his wife, had a vision to help under-represented students pursue higher education.
In establishing the scholarship fund in honor of her late husband, Vera Lee Clanton wanted to provide guidance, leadership and support for students in their pursuit of higher learning at SF State. She hopes that upon graduation they will take with them not only a world-class education, but also a commitment to the future of their communities.
The scholarship awards up to $2,000 annually. Preference is given to applicants who are first-generation college students, active participants in their church or community, single or teenage parents, and recipients of Aid to Families for Dependent Children or other public assistance.
For details, contact Evelyn Hooker, executive assistant to the vice president of student affairs, at (415) 338-2032 or email@example.com.
-- Student Writer Audrey Tang with Matt Itelson
1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132 (415) 338-1111