McDonald’s USA and Roland S. Martin, a lifetime member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., are awarding more than $100,000 in scholarships to rising juniors and seniors attending Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs). The effort, in honor of the fraternity’s 115 years of scholarship and Black excellence, is to help address the often-insurmountable financial challenges faced by HBCU students attempting to fund schooling.
Data shows that on average, scholarships and grants only cover 25 percent of the total cost of college per year and often scholarships for HBCU students are centered on transitioning them from high school to college. For upperclassmen, the rising costs of tuition and growing loan debt paired with the limited scholarship funds offered for this group can make it financially difficult to graduate.
“HBCUs and their students are vital to the fabric of our nation and I will always champion for their success,” said Martin. “I’ve witnessed first-hand the financial struggle that impacts Black college students, especially those in their final semesters. So, I’m pleased to partner with McDonald’s and TMCF (Thurgood Marshall College Fund) to celebrate my beloved fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha, and provide a resource that will help Black students graduate.”
With the help of TMCF, seven rising juniors and seniors will be awarded $15,000 scholarships for the 2022-2023 academic year. In alignment with Alpha Phi Alpha’s century-long commitment to scholarship, McDonald’s continues its support of community, education and feeding and fostering community with this scholarship, which is additive to its existing Black & Positively Golden Scholarship program that awarded $500,000 to HBCU students last year.
“We know the outstanding work being done at HBCUs, which is why our team is devoted to use our scale and resources to expand educational opportunities for Black students,” said Reginald J. Miller, Vice President and Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer at McDonald’s. “Our hope is that this scholarship effort helps build and support the pipeline of diverse talent that will go on to be changemakers in our society for decades to come.”
Applications are now available on the Thurgood Marshall College Fund website at TMCF.org and are due Feb. 28. Award winners will be announced prior to the start of the Fall 2022 semester. Students interested in applying must meet the following eligibility requirements:
• Be 18 years or older
• Be enrolled as a junior or senior at a TMCF
member institution and private HBCU
in Fall 2022
• Have a cumulative grade point average
of 2.7 or higher
• Submit a brief essay on how they demonstrate
Black excellence and leadership within their
• Be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident
with a valid permanent resident card or
passport stamped I-551
In addition to the scholarship funds, recipients will also have the unique opportunity to engage one-on-one with McDonald’s executives currently working in their respective fields of study.
“For more than two decades, we’ve worked with McDonald’s to provide critical resources to students when they need it most. Matriculating through college can be tough, and funds to support navigating that journey is a crucial part of ensuring graduation is attainable,” said Dr. Harry L. Williams, President and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.
For more information on the scholarship or to apply, visit www.TMCF.org.