Students encounter problems with 'Saginaw Promise' - WNEM TV 5

Students encounter problems with 'Saginaw Promise'

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Graduation season is upon us, but as some local students head to college, they may be spending more than they anticipated.

That's because money from a scholarship known as the Saginaw Promise is not reaching as many students as it should.

The money is there, but the problem is the way students are applying for it.

The Saginaw Promise Zone Authority raised 400,000 dollars last year. That's 100,000 dollars more than 2012. That was the first year of operation for the program. 

The increase in money is partly due to the success of the 'Magic of Promise' event, hosted by NBA great Magic Johnson.

But only 121 students applied for the Saginaw Promise scholarship this year, 55 less than the previous year.

Board members say half of the applicants are missing important information and haven't met deadlines and may miss out on the money.

Board Chairperson, Joyce Seals says those who didn't apply for federal financial aid earlier this year could have trouble getting the local scholarship.  

"Our own manager of our program will have difficulty allocating funds," says Seals, "We are the last dollar."

The scholarship provides one thousand dollars a year to students attending a 2-year college in Michigan and two thousand dollars a year to those attending a four year institution in the state.

Seals says the money is there. Local families just need to be more proactive about utilizing it.

90 area students were awarded scholarships from Saginaw Promise last year.

Members say they can't be sure how many will be given out this year until all the applicants turn in the needed information.

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