Hispanic Education Foundation – Providing Educational Opportunity
The Hispanic Education Foundation (HEF) is an educational non-profit organization with a single mission: To provide scholarships to completing graduates of the St. Vrain Valley School District (SVVSD) in Boulder County who plan on attending an accredited institution for post-secondary education. The institutions may include a two- or four-year college or a vocational school.
The Foundation was created in 1989. In the intervening years a total of 530 scholarships have been awarded, including 84 between 2014 and 2016. The total value of scholarships awarded is more than $400,000. The scholarships are awarded in May of each year in a gala banquet at a SVVSD high school where the recipients and family members are publicly recognized.
There are a number of unique features about HEF.
First, scholarships are awarded to students on the basis of criteria that don’t fit the traditional profile expected of scholarship recipients. The emphasis in the selection process is on students who have overcome challenges and obstacles in their lives.
Second, scholarships are renewed for the full period of continuing education when the recipients provide evidence that they remain enrolled and are making progress in their post-secondary education. The maximum number of scholarship years is four.
Third, the scholarships contribute to the opportunity for students to become the first in their families to achieve post-secondary education opportunities.
Finally, HEF operates without staff. The inclusive, all volunteer board plans and carries out all activities including administration, fund raising, selection of awardees, the annual golf tournament, and the unique gala banquet.
Funding for the scholarships is raised through grants from foundations, sponsorships of the annual golf tournament and gala banquet from businesses, and individual donations – including 100 percent of board members who annually make personal contributions.
HEF has been developing in a very positive manner in recent years. As a consequence, a board decision is pending that would increase the number of scholarships awarded and the financial value of the scholarships. The board has been very aggressive in developing the financial capacity to increase the level of assistance to students who without support may not be able to pursue their dreams of attending post-secondary educational opportunities.
Contact with HEF can be made through any of the members of the board, the contact details of which are located on http://www.heflongmont.com/, the organization’s website.