My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for National Relief Charities, Sherman, TX, USA
I have volunteered for the American Indian Education Foundation for nearly ten years as part of the Scholarship Selection Committee. AIEF is one branch of National Relief Charities whose focus is to promote educational opportunities for Native American students. The Scholarship Selection Committee meets annually to award college scholarships to Native American students that show a strong desire to pursue additional education and give back to their communities. These students have often overcome significant hurdles to pursue their goals. The committee spends many hours carefully reviewing the scholarship applications in advance and then we meet as a group to discuss the applications. We describe what spoke to us about the students' essays and educational history, and arrive at a consensus of awarded applicants. This is a unique process that has worked well in selecting students that successfully complete their course of study. It has been an honor to work with the talented AIEF staff and fellow committee members who are educators and student facilitators from tribes across the nation. We've recently started awarding a small number of graduate level scholarships in addition to the majority of undergraduate ones. It is especially nice to support new and returning AIEF recipients who have excelled in undergraduate programs, and want to continue on to get their post-graduate degrees in fields ranging from medicine to sociology. I've found that the AIEF scholarship program is like many of the other programs that the National Relief Charities runs. It is well thought out and targeted to those most in need. The AIEF staff follows up with students throughout the year to see how they're doing, particularly important for those students that may be hundreds of miles from family and familiar surroundings. Part of what impresses me about AIEF and the NRC organization in general is their longevity--they're in it for the long haul and they continually strive to improve their service to Native American communities.
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