HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - As is the case for most students, cost was a consideration when Faith Sulak was choosing a college.
“Furman is a great school, but it has a hefty price tag. We didn’t think I was ever going to go there because it’s a very expensive school. And this foundation has made and the money Furman has given me has made it a reality,” said Sulak, a Community Foundation of the Lowcountry scholarship recipient.
The Community Foundation of the Lowcountry has made decisions easier for dozens of families by distributing their annual scholarship money throughout the Lowcountry.
Which will help build tomorrows for students like Anthon Funderburk, who will attend the University of Arizona with the help of a scholarship from the foundation.
“I’m very grateful to the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry. Before this, I was going to have to go into tens of thousands of dollars of debt,” said Funderburk.
The Community Foundation of the Lowcountry awards 26 different scholarships to roughly 150 students each year and was able to maintain its support this year despite the challenges all non-profits have faced from the pandemic.
“The fundraising has been challenging, but we have some very generous folks in the Lowcountry who have stepped up to help in this really difficult time, in addition to local funds, we also have Gulfstream Aerospace scholarship funds as well. It’s a great program. It brings out the best in the community, in the donors, the students, the committee members, everyone,” said Debbie Cahoon, Community Foundation VP for Community Investment.
The foundation’s scholarships range from $500 to $10,000 and are helping the college experience settle in for students who just completed a very unusual senior year of high school.
“I just had summer orientation online through zoom and it was a supposed to be in person but obviously there’s nothing you can do about that. So there’s still some abnormal circumstances or abnormal occurrences. But for the most part, getting scholarships and all that stuff, it’s becoming more real.”
“I know this will help them become better students. They are more resilient maybe than their predecessors because of what they had to go through. So, I wish them all success.”
The foundation awards both merit and need-based scholarships and also has something for continuing and non-traditional students.