The Ford Motor Company Fund, in a partnership with the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation, is working to accelerate workforce development by supporting students with Ford Blue Oval Scholarships who are focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics education.
San Antonio, Texas., Dearborn, Mich., December 15, 2009 — The Ford Motor Company Fund has awarded $2,500 Ford Blue Oval Scholarships to each of ten local San Antonio, Texas high school students. These young men and women, recognized as "Blue Oval Scholars," will soon find their award to be an enviable accreditation for having achieved their tech-based education. The awards will be made after the students have made their college selection. Awardees and their high schools are:
James G. Sullivan – Ronald Reagan High School; Omri S. Russo – Winston Churchill High School; Luc H. Le – Theodore Roosevelt High School; Josue D. Cruz – Burbank High School; Joshua G. Charles – Brooks Academy High School; Yevgeniya S. Vinogradova – John Jay Science & Engineering Academy; Angela M. Morales – McCollum High School; Victoria A. Gonzalez – South San Antonio High School; Ariana M. Bocanegra – Southwest High School, and Camille M. Baker – Warren High School.
The Ford Blue Oval Award Scholarships are a part of a larger effort, Operation Goodwill, launched earlier this year by Ford Motor Company Fund. It is an innovative initiative designed to increase Ford's philanthropic and community-related commitment in select cities across America. Through this program, Ford Fund is partnering with its dealers in providing funding to support a combination of grants, safety and educational programs and volunteer activities that enhance the quality of life in San Antonio.
Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, is a highly-recognized industry leader committed to furthering the development of America's future engineers, scientists and technical work force. It has partnered with the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation, who in sharing its workforce development vision, administers the scholarship. The Ford Blue Oval Scholarship, a one-year gift, allows students to apply for subsequent awards. It was established in the summer of 2009 with plans to expand to other cities.
"We are all working toward a common goal – influencing and encouraging young people to pursue manufacturing engineering degrees by focusing on a technology-based education. If we are successful in reaching them, we think they will be better able to align themselves with emerging technologies and the skilled, high-demand jobs industry has told us it will need," says James G. (Jim) Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services.
The scholarship awarded to San Antonio high school students required they reside in Bexar County, Texas, maintain a minimum of 2.5/4 GPA or GED certificate; be a part time or full time student pursuing a career in engineering or engineering technology and enrolled in a diploma/certificate, two-year or four-year program, and submit a student essay with two letters of reference. In administering the scholarships, the SME Education Foundation reviewed applicant submissions and determined awardees.
"Young people have to be made more aware of how innovative technologies are redefining the world, and the importance of their being educated in order for them to be a part of it," says Bart Aslin, director, SME Education Foundation. "The Ford Blue Oval Scholarship is a worthy investment which will have critical impact on need. We are pleased to share their commitment."
Today, nearly 30 percent of workers with science and engineering degrees are age 50 and older. As a result, our future technical workforce is at risk and U.S. manufacturing is being lost to overseas markets in Japan, China, Korea and Brazil. As industry demands on the workforce increase, so must student knowledge of 21st century skills. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts the U.S. will face a skilled-worker shortage of eight million by 2010, up to 14 million by 2014. Take notice of the word "skilled." As a result, preparation of our technical workforce is more important than ever.
About Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services:Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services is committed to creating opportunities that promote corporate citizenship, philanthropy, volunteerism and cultural diversity for those who live in the communities where Ford operates. Established in 1949 and made possible by funding from Ford Motor Company, Ford Motor Company Fund supports initiatives and institutions that foster innovative education, auto-related safety, and American heritage and legacy.
National programs include Ford Partnership for Advanced Studies, which provides high school students with academically rigorous 21st century learning experiences, and Driving Skills for Life, a teen-focused auto safety initiative. The Ford Volunteer Corps, established in 2005, continues Ford's legacy of caring worldwide. Through the Volunteer Corps, Ford employees and retirees participate in a wide range of volunteer projects in their communities. For more information on programs made possible by Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services, visit www.community.ford.com.
About the SME Education Foundation:The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Education Foundation – created in 1979, is dedicated to the advancement of manufacturing education and preparing the next generation of manufacturing engineers and technologists. Thanks to the generosity of its partners including corporations, organizations, foundations and individual donors, the Foundation has awarded more than $29 million since 1980 in awards, scholarships and youth programs. For more information visit http://www.smeef.org and our award-winning website designed for young people – manufacturingiscool.com.