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Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro Enhances Scholarship Program
Jan 20, 2016

The Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro Scholarship Program, established in 1958, is a project that awards both traditional and non-traditional scholarships to local students. This year, the nonprofit organization announced an increase from $60,000 to $75,000, to be awarded to students for the 2015/2016 school year and going forward.

The increase in the scholarship funds allowed for the addition of 17 new scholarship recipients for the 2015/2016 school year, bringing the total to 33 recipients.

"The Junior Auxiliary Scholarship program truly makes an impact on the lives of the recipients in our community," says Taura McDaniel, current committee chairman. "I have seen students from all walks of life benefit greatly from this scholarship. Serving on this committee for the last five years has also truly been a blessing for me as well. I am so proud of our organization for committing to support the growing needs of this program and look forward to seeing it continue to grow. This project is made possible by the generosity and support of our community. "

Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro scholarship recipients for the 2015 fall and 2016 spring semesters include: Payton Newlon, Jackson McKinney, Morgan Speer, Alex Jordan Ballard, Hannah Campbell, Kaylee Lynn Turner, Ana Osorio, Kelly Mendes, Brayden Prestidge, Megan Martin, Brittany Files, Garrett Andrews, Mary Kathryn Williams, Taylor Wheeless, Zelda Jones, Haven Saffell, Ailyah Green, Sara Hackett, Vivian Cardwell, Bailey Brown, Caleb Proffer, Kaitlyn Hale, Jakob Raby, Abbie Love, Madeline Prestige, Shana Hughes, Ember Myrick, Brody Prestige, Tanner Harris, Gunnar Turley, Madison Booth, Tiffany Bryant and Carson Coats. The selected recipient for the 2015/2016 endowment through ASU is Christopher Trenton Cunningham.

“Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro gave me a gift that I will be forever grateful for, a second chance to achieve my dreams to graduate college,” said Kelly Ann Mendes, JA Scholarship recipient. “I have been a recipient of the non-traditional scholarship since 2013, and the love, encouragement, and motivation I have received from this organization and its members is one of the primary reasons I have succeeded thus far in my academic career. My passion is to one day be able to give another woman the opportunity that JA gave me, the opportunity to succeed in life. I am forever grateful for this organization and all its members, and without this scholarship, I would not have had this opportunity. Thank you to all the past, current, and future members for believing in me.”

All new applicants who are interested in applying for the scholarship must live in Craighead County however scholarship recipients attend a variety of colleges including Arkansas State University (ASU), ASU Newport, University of Arkansas, University of Arkansas Little Rock, University of Central Arkansas, Union University, and Lyon College.  Also new to the program since inception is the inclusion of students who plan to attend a trade school and non-traditional students.

Scholarship candidates must meet the program requirements to be eligible. The requirements include: a high school graduate or a GED equivalent, residency in Craighead County, a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher on a 4.0 grading scale and financial need. Criteria for maintaining the scholarship includes maintaining a 2.5 GPA or equivalent, submission of official documentation of grades each semester, submission of updated application forms and financial information, a minimum of 12 hours and submission of the renewal request letter.

All new and existing applications must be turned in by the deadline to be considered. Fall scholarship deadline is June 1st, spring semester deadline is January 1st, and the summer session deadline is April 30th.  All questions about the scholarship program can be directed to jajonesboro@gmail.org.

The growth of the scholarship program is funded entirely by the profits made by Junior Auxiliary's only fundraiser – Charity Ball. Held every February, Charity Ball now routinely raises over $100,000 each year to support the 11 programs offered to the community by Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro. The next Charity Ball is slated for February 20 2016. To find out how you can participate, contact jajonesboro@gmail.com.

Each year, our local Junior Auxiliary chapter provides scholarships for Craighead County students to attend the university, vocational or trade school of their choice. Committee members also serve as mentors to the scholarship recipients. To date, Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro has awarded more than $575,000 in scholarships.  In addition, JA of Jonesboro established a $100,000 endowment to Arkansas State University in 2012.

Scholarship is the longest running Junior Auxiliary project, founded by the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries in 1962, and is Junior Auxiliary’s national service project. Since being created, the NAJA scholarship committee has awarded more than $1,000,000 in grants to graduate students in fields which address the special needs of children and youth.

Junior Auxiliary of Jonesboro, AR is a non-profit, volunteer, service organization that serves the needs of children, youth and families in Craighead County. We are a part of the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries, which serves communities through 99 chapters in 8 southern states.

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