TALLAHASSEE, FL. – The Florida Prepaid College Foundation (FPCF) today announced it is partnering with Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) to award $4.2 million in college scholarships to students living in the most poverty-stricken zip codes in the state, providing 2-Year College Scholarships to 1,000 students over the next four years.
FPL’s donation of $2.1 million, matched dollar-for-dollar by the Florida Prepaid College Foundation, is the largest contribution to date since the Path to Prosperity Scholarship Program launched two years ago.
The Path to Prosperity Scholarship Program is a partnership with the Florida Chamber Foundation, to reduce childhood poverty in our state by providing a pathway to college for Florida students.
“Lack of educational opportunity is one of the root causes of generational poverty,” said Florida Prepaid College Foundation Chairman John Rood. “This generous donation from FPL will provide significant opportunities in some of the poorest areas of our state, providing a path to higher education for deserving students.”
Right now, more than 700,000 Florida children are living in poverty. Half of these children are concentrated in just 15 percent of Florida’s zip codes – resulting in extremely impoverished communities where children face a much greater likelihood of academic challenges, health risks and other obstacles.
“Florida is our home, and we are dedicated to creating a brighter future for all who live here,” said FPL Vice President of External Affairs and Economic Development Pam Rauch. “Through this partnership, we are proud to open doors to a more hopeful future for students who have so much promise and potential – and perhaps welcome them one day to the FPL team. I encourage other Florida corporations and organizations to join us in this effort to nurture talent and skill among our future workforce.”
Scholarships will be awarded in phases, with the first 250 scholarships being allocated to FPL service areas that align with the 150 highest-poverty zip codes. Eligible high school students must meet scholarship criteria including staying crime-free and drug-free.
The Florida Prepaid College Foundation and Florida Chamber Foundation have partnered with Big Brothers Big Sisters Association of Florida, Take Stock in Children, and the Florida Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs to identify students and provide mentoring as part of the scholarship award. The scholarships can be used at Florida public colleges and universities as well as technical and vocational schools.
“The Path to Prosperity Scholarship Program is built on the foundational truth that college education can open the door to a more prosperous future while building the talent our state needs to grow and thrive,” said Mark Wilson, Florida Chamber of Commerce President and CEO. “We are grateful to Florida Power & Light Company and their commitment to helping Florida students.”
Learn more about the Path to Prosperity Scholarship Program and the Florida Prepaid College Foundation at www.pathtoprosperityscholarship.com.