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A newly established Diversity Office Scholarship Program at Eastern Kentucky University aims to do more than merely dispense funds.

In addition to receiving much-needed financial assistance, scholarship recipients will participate in a variety of programs designed to give them the tools for success, inside and outside the classroom.

“The purpose of the program is to expand and enrich campus life by recognizing and supporting outstanding students from first-generation, low-income and various cultural, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds with diverse interests, perspectives and life experiences,” said Dr. Timothy Forde, chief diversity officer and special assistant to the executive vice president. “Our office is committed to helping students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds achieve their academic goals, and this program promotes academic excellence through monthly workshops, mentoring and involvement in on-campus activities.”

Forty scholarships will be awarded this fall: 20 financial aid scholarships valued at $1,000 per academic year, and 20 book scholarships valued at $500 per year. Applicants must be first-generation and/or low-income, full-time, degree-seeking students. Consideration will be given to all students who have exhibited a dedication to diversity, which at EKU includes, but is not limited to, race, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, gender, sexual orientation, disabilities and cultural or national backgrounds.

“We lose a lot of students because they face minor stumbling blocks such as financial holds,” Forde said. “We want to provide some financial assistance and also give them the tools they need to be successful here at EKU.  We also want to create a sense of family among the recipients.”

The application deadline for the scholarships is Oct. 1. For more information about the scholarship program, including additional requirements and an application, visit