Three Bronx students were recently announced as part of the inaugural class of the Visa Black Scholars and Jobs Program, where 50 incoming first-year college students around the country were awarded with scholarships, mentorships and opportunities to join Visa full time upon graduation.
Goodnews Ihueze from the Bronx is a member of the inaugural class and will be attending Claremont McKenna College. The other Bronx winners are Herman Bikoko and Kristen Wallace.
“Today’s college-bound students are facing incredible challenges, with students attending and leaving institutions with more debt than ever before,” said Dr. Harry Williams, president and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. “The Visa Black Scholars are current and future changemakers of our society, and our hope is that we can provide those incredible students with the financial assistance they need to focus on what matters most. This program is even more critical in our current climate as we strive to create a more just and equitable society.”
The Visa Black Scholars and Jobs Program is designed for college-bound Black and African American students in the U.S. Eligible high school seniors who are pursuing an education in a business or technology field and intend to enroll as a full-time undergraduate in an accredited four-year college or university can apply for the scholarship. Scholars who continue to meet the criteria, remain in good standing and maintain a minimum of 3.0 GPA at their university will be eligible for annual renewals. Hundreds of students across the U.S. applied for the 2021 program.
The Visa Black Scholars and Jobs Program, created in partnership with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, is a $10 million investment over the next five years. Core components of the program include:
- Work with a Visa mentor throughout their college experience, beginning with the 2021-2022 academic year.
- Participate in a Scholars Summit at Visa’s HQ in 2022.
- Support of the scholars’ personal, academic and professional development.
- Participate in a paid internship, with an invitation to join Visa full-time upon graduation for those who meet program requirements.