By Charles J. Davis
Saturday, June 3rd, St. John Divine Missionary Baptist Church hosted the annual Florida A&M University National Alumni Association Scholarship Banquet.
Florida A&M University is one of the best historically black colleges in the nation. The Pensacola Chapter of The FAMU Alumni board selected eight high school graduates and presented them with scholarships to attend the highly accredited university.
When speaker/secretary Marilyn Wesley took the stage, she delved into interesting facts and folklore about the school colors and how “The Rattler” mascot came to be. “Each of us in here has had a relationship with FAMU some way or another,” she stated.
“When the college located to highway plantation in 1891, the rural landscape had many rattlesnakes. And that is how their mascot name “The Rattler” was chosen.”
At the banquet, the university’s colors of green and orange were heavily featured. The colors have a strong connection to Florida by each representation. Green represents the agricultural plants and orange represents Florida’s citrus industry.
The scholarships awarded will benefit high school graduate students from Escambia and Santa Rosa counties.
“Since 2012 we have distributed $18,000 dollars to various students in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties so they can further achieve a higher education at Florida A&M University,” stated Reginald Parker, President of the Pensacola Chapter Florida A&M University National Alumni Association.
The FAMU Alumni Association awarded $6,700 dollars in scholarship funds to eight deserving high school graduates. The honored recipients for 2017 are:
Daria Straughn- $1500
Ciara D. Mims- $1200
Quandarious Wilson- $900
Omari Harris- $800
Lauren Johnson – $700
Alandrea Montgomery- $600
Kiera B. Mitchell- $500
Jaylan Rawlings- $500
On identifying potential scholarship recipients, Parker says the association publishes the scholarship information at local high schools and also ask the alumni members to actively seek potential students.
“The banquet offers an opportunity for former FAMU alum to come together socially, to raise money to support the university and to give scholarships to local high school students,” said Nettie A. Wheaton, Vice-President Florida A&M University National Alumni Association.
Potential scholarship student candidates must have a 3.0 GPA and must have been accepted by Florida A&M and are willing to attend the university.
The Pensacola Chapter of the Florida A&M University National Alumni Association are always accepting donations. You can find more information on FAMU Pensacola Alumni Chapter at https://www.facebook.com/FAMUPensacola.