Winter break is an ideal time for area high school and college students interested in learning more about public service to apply for Sorensen Youth Scholarships.
The scholarships, funded by a recent $7,500 gift from Bama Works, will allow four local students to participate in the High School Leaders Program or College Leaders Program, both offered through the University of Virginia’s Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership.
“We are delighted that Bama Works Fund of Dave Matthews Band in the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation can partner with us in training local young leaders,” Sorensen director Bob Gibson said. “We hope to promote good government across the state together, starting in our own community.”
John R. Redick, president of the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, said, “Dave Matthews’ Bama Works Fund has touched the lives of many in the Charlottesville area through gifts that provide opportunities for disadvantaged children, protect the environment, promote appreciation of music and the arts and support the needs of the disabled. The Community Foundation is deeply grateful for the band’s support of community philanthropy and for the good work of the organizations that benefit from the gifts.”
The scholarships will attract applicants “from our own backyard,” said Colleen Smith, Sorensen’s deputy director and director of development.
Todd Galyean, who participated in this year’s College Leaders Program, said “receiving scholarship support meant the world to me, because it meant whether I attended the program or not, which originally I knew was going to be a good thing, but today I know was an essential brick in the pathway of my career.”
Another participant, Meghan Hobbs, said the experience “has taught me the incredible values of reaching across the aisle to trust and respect what others are saying and communicate effectively my position on issues. It has allowed me the avenues to network and meet people I would have otherwise never been in contact with.”
William Snoeyenbos said the High School Leaders 2012 program “has changed my life, and now I feel ready to energize my community.”
Another participant in the high school program, Grace Charlton, added, “Virginia politics are way more interesting than national politics to me now.”
The deadline to apply for the programs is March 4. To apply and for more information, click here.