CullmanTimes.com - Cullman, Alabama

October 30, 2013

NFIB/Alabama, NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation to offer vocational and trade school scholarships


NFIB/Alabama, NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation

MONTGOMERY — The state office of the National Federation of Independent Business and the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation today announced the creation of two college scholarships specifically intended for students who want to attend a vocational or trade school.

Applications will be accepted through Dec. 18. The awards will be announced next spring.

Rosemary Elebash, state director of NFIB/Alabama, the state's leading small-business association, said the NFIB/Alabama Leadership Council decided to expand the scholarship program to include awards specifically for students attending vocational school after small-business owners expressed frustration over the qualifications of young people entering the workforce.

"The Young Entrepreneur Awards recognize and reward graduating high school seniors who have started their own successful small businesses," Elebash said. "With these new scholarships, we hope to help create a generation of young entrepreneurs who have honed their technical and vocational skills, so that they can be an invaluable asset to the workforce and hit the ground running when they start their own small businesses."

In addition to the NFIB/Alabama Leadership Council Young Entrepreneur Awards for students attending vocational school, the small-business association has two endowed scholarships: The NFIB/Phyllis Kennedy Young Entrepreneur Award, which was the first NFIB Young Entrepreneur Award to be endowed, and the NFIB/Bob Riley Young Entrepreneur Award.

Each year, the NFIB Young Entrepreneur program offers non-renewable scholarships that recognize young people who have demonstrated entrepreneurial spirit and initiative with college scholarship, ranging in value from $1,000 to $10,000. The program was established to raise awareness among the nation’s youth of the critical role that private enterprise and entrepreneurship play in the building of America.

“Creating a new generation of entrepreneurs is one of this country’s greatest needs,” said senior manager of the Young Entrepreneur Foundation Molly Young. “Each year, we are extremely impressed with the quality of applicants who have pursued the scholarships and this year, our expectations are even higher. We encourage any high school senior with a budding business and an innovative spirit to apply.”

Applicants for the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Awards must be graduating high school seniors who are entering their freshman year at an accredited two-or four-year university, college, or vocational institute in the fall of 2014. Specifically for the NFIB/Alabama LC Young Entrepreneur Award, applicants must plan to attend a vocational or technical school. They must also demonstrate entrepreneurial spirit and initiative through having established a business of their own.

What do students need to know?

• Students are able to apply through Dec. 18, 2013.

• The independent selection committee will review all applications and select semi-finalists. Semi-finalists will be notified by mid-January.

• Semi-finalists MUST be interviewed by an NFIB member, who will be assigned to each semi-finalist.

• The Award recipients are selected by an independent scholarship organization. Scholarships are merit-based, not based on financial need.

Applications material can be found at www.NFIB.com/YEA.

The NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation is committed to educating young people about the critical role of small business and the American free enterprise system. Since 2003, the NFIB Young Entrepreneur Foundation has awarded 2,400 scholarships to graduating high school seniors totaling more than $2.6 million.