The Rio Grande Down Syndrome Network Scholarship Committee is proud to announce the recipients of our first two post-secondary scholarships. Isabelle Franchere and Jessica Silva were presented with their scholarship awards at this year’s Denim and Diamonds Gala held on April 22, 2023.
Isabelle loves going to Jeremiah’s Place and attending their Summer Camp Program, in particular their cooking courses. Currently on the waitlist for the DD waiver, Isabelle was awarded a $1,000 scholarship so she can continue courses and pursue her creative talents while she awaits funding from the waiver.
Jessica applied for the scholarship to help support her love of photography. She is planning to use her $1,000 scholarship for equipment and classes to learn new techniques. She hopes that developing her skills will turn her passion into a career as a photographer.
RGDSN launched the scholarship program in 2023, to offer financial assistance to adults with Down syndrome who wish to enroll in a class or program that will build life skills, lead to greater opportunities for employment, support independent living, or in some other way empower the individual to succeed in living an enriched and fulfilled life.
The scholarship committee wanted to make sure to eliminate as many barriers to accessing scholarships as possible. As part of this, a non-traditional application process was encouraged. Applicants can write stories, submit drawings or use other creative means to demonstrate their needs.
Both Isabelle and Jessica submitted video applications which were also presented at this year’s Gala for attendees to enjoy.
Congratulations Isabelle and Jessica. We can’t wait to see what you do next!