(The following is a press release from Union Plus)
Union Plus recently awarded $150,000 in scholarships to 115 students representing 32 unions, including one winner representing NATCA. This year’s group of scholarship recipients includes university, college, and trade or technical school students from 36 states.
The NATCA winner is the recipient of a new award, called Isaiah’s Award. This scholarship is given in honor of the exceptional life of Isaiah C., a beloved child, fostered and adopted by a current, long-time employee of Union Plus. Isaiah was a smart, talented, spiritual, generous, and kind young man. It is our wish that his gentle spirit lives on, in part, through this namesake scholarship. Applicants for Isaiah’s Award must demonstrate a special connection to the foster care system and complete an essay describing their personal experiences, or career goals, related to the foster care system. The award was selected from 362 applicants who submitted essays.
Samantha Hasmi-Delgado Pembroke Pines, Florida. Hasmi-Delgado, whose mother, Martha Delgado is a member of NATCA Local ZMA, has been awarded a $2,500 scholarship.
“Union Plus is pleased to help these incredibly talented union family members offset the high cost of college education,” Union Plus President Mitch Stevens said. “Education is a vital building block for success, and we’re happy that the Union Plus Scholarship Program provides assistance and support for 115 deserving students.”
Meet the 2018 NATCA Honoree
Samantha is a Communication Sciences and Disorders major in her second year at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Her goal is to become a speech-language pathologist and work with children. Through her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta, Samantha has volunteered and participated in fundraising for a range or organizations including Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), which partners with local volunteers who watch over and advocate for abused and neglected children in the foster care system. Samantha writes that her mother’s union, NATCA, for which she was a member for over 27 years, has had a large impact on her family, including her mother’s benefit of maternity leave when Samantha was adopted.
“The union gives my mom security in her workplace as well as creates a great sense of community and comradery amongst coworkers, which then in turn creates a productive working atmosphere,” Samantha said. Samantha was adopted from an orphanage and her sister was adopted from a foster home, both from China. Her family is currently in the process of becoming a licensed foster family and they look forward to welcoming new children into their home. “I would not be the person I am today without the connection I have with foster care and adoption and I will forever continue to educate and be a helping hand in the huge community of people it has also impacted,” said Samantha.
Activities and honors: AP Scholar Award; captain, Charles W. Flanagan High School World Guard, Executive Assistant, Kappa Alpha Theta sorority.
Volunteerism: class-aid, Paradise Christian School; fundraising for Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and University of Central Florida’s Knight-Thon
Learn More About the Union Plus Scholarship Program
The Union Plus Scholarship Program, now in its 27th year, awards scholarships based on outstanding academic achievement, personal character, financial need, and commitment to the values of organized labor. The program is offered through the Union Plus Education Foundation.
Since starting the program in 1991, Union Plus has awarded more than $4.3 million in educational funding to more than 2,900 union members, spouses, and dependent children. Union Plus Scholarship awards are granted to students attending a two-year college, four-year college, graduate school, or recognized technical or trade school. The selection process is very competitive, and this year over 6,000 applications were received from 70 unions and all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia and two U.S. territories.
Visit unionplus.org/scholarship for applications and benefit eligibility.
About Union Plus
Union Plus, founded by the AFL-CIO in 1986, uses the collective buying power of America’s 12.5 million union members to deliver top-quality benefits and services at competitive prices to working families. In addition to the scholarship program, Union Plus offers the new Free College program which makes it possible for union members and their families to earn an associate degree completely online at no cost. Union Plus also provides a wide range of money-saving programs, including discounts on wireless services from AT&T, the only nationwide unionized wireless carrier, savings on travel and recreation, and more. To learn more, visit unionplus.org.