SoCal Gas Awards Scholarships to High-Achieving STEM Students

LOS ANGELES (CNS) – SoCalGas Thursday announced that 25 students from Southern California and elsewhere who study science, technology, engineering, math, accounting or finance have been awarded funds from the utility’s scholarship program.

The utility said it partnered with the Scholarship America philanthropic organization to provide multi-year scholarships eligible for renewal for the next three years and totaling over $300,000 in available funds.

The students were evaluated on their academic achievements, community involvement and personal statements addressing the utility’s sustainability actions in support of California’s clean energy goals. With 87% of this year’s SoCalGas Scholarship Program recipients identified as minority students, SoCalGas’ efforts aim to create opportunities for diverse and underserved students, the utility said.

“Education is a key avenue to help people succeed, and these SoCalGas scholarships will help those with the highest needs,” said Los Angeles City Councilmember Joe Buscaino. “During my decade as a Councilmember and prior career with LAPD, I saw firsthand how education created a path towards a better future for low-income Angelenos.”

The scholarship winners include Aisha Siddiqi, a graduate of Foothill High School who will be pursuing an environmental science degree at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York.

“It’s an honor to receive the SoCalGas Scholarship this year,” she said. “It has been a wonderful adventure so far in pursuing my dreams to help our environment. I cannot wait to expand my knowledge in the coming years at RIT thanks to this scholarship.”

Since the program’s inception in 2001, the utility has awarded more than 2,200 scholarships totaling over $3 million in funding. Students who plan to attend a community college or trade school will receive a $1,000 scholarship, and students who plan to attend a university or four-year college will receive a $5,000 scholarship. Awards are renewable for three years or until a bachelor’s degree is earned, whichever occurs first, on the basis of satisfactory academic performance, for a total of up to $20,000 per recipient.

“Our youth are the driving force of the future,” said Andy Carrasco, vice president of communications, local government, and community affairs at SoCalGas. “The goal of our scholarship is to nurture this group and help build the important foundation that will help prepare them for professional opportunities and higher education. We understand that rising educational costs can be stressful, and we want to help alleviate those worries as much as possible to allow our students a brighter future.”

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