The Transform Rhode Island Scholarship (TRIS) gives voice to the ideas of young people of color who have ideas and want to make a difference in their community while also removing barriers to higher education. If you had $1-million how would you change Rhode Island? We’re listening.
Do you feel like no one hears you?
Do you think to yourself ‘the way my parents or my grandparents did things don’t work for me?’
Do you wonder if you have the power to make a difference? To change the game?
Do you want to be a part of something bigger than just yourself?
2022 Winner: Mariam Kaba
In 2022, almost 100 high school students from across Rhode Island applied for the first Transform RI Scholarship. Meet the five incredible winning students, whose ideas can truly change their communities.
TRIS is designed to help clear financial barriers for young people of color who want to further their education. Additionally, it is designed to seek out their most creative ideas on how to transform the Ocean State in the areas of education, skills training, business, healthcare and housing to improve their communities.
Your idea doesn’t have to be complex. It simply needs to be heard, seen and felt. It needs to come from you. The top ten entries will receive a one-time award, and the Papitto Opportunity Connection will invest $1,000,000 to make the winning entry come to life.
WHAT IS THE POC TRANSFORM RI SCHOLARSHIP?
Simply put, it is an opportunity for young Rhode Islanders of color to express their hopes and dreams for how they would create change in their community, while providing financial assistance to them for higher education and related costs, such as healthcare and housing.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Students in grades 9-12 are asked to answer only one question as part of their scholarship application: “If you were given $1,000,000 to better the lives of Rhode Island’s BIPOC communities either through education, job skills training, business, housing or healthcare, how would you do so?”
The top ten (10) entries will receive a one-time scholarship award, and the Papitto Opportunity Connection will invest $1,000,000 to activate the first-place entry.
DOES IT COST ANYTHING FOR ME TO APPLY?
There is no fee to apply.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR THIS SCHOLARSHIP?
Any Rhode Island high school student of color in grades 9-12 that or attends a public, private, or parochial school or who is in a registered home-school program.
DO I NEED TO DEMONSTRATE FINANCIAL NEED AS PART OF THE APPLICATION?
No, this scholarship is not contingent upon financial need.
HOW DO I ANSWER THE QUESTION AND PRESENT MY IDEA?
Students can tell us about their idea in three different ways: You can write an essay of no more than 1,000 words. Create a video no longer than 3-minutes or develop a comparable multi-media presentation. It is important to keep in mind – essays or videos exceeding those limits, will NOT be considered.
HOW MUCH ARE THE SCHOLARSHIPS?
First place is $25,000. There will be two $15,000 awards. Two $10,000 awards and five $5,000 awards. These scholarships are one-time only and not renewable. Previous winners are not eligible to participate.
WHAT CAN THE SCHOLARSHIP BE USED FOR?
The scholarship funds can be used for expenses relating to a student’s education at an accredited two-or-four-year college/university or vocational/technical school in the United States of America and/or for other qualifying expenses such as tuition, housing and/or healthcare expenses.
IF MY IDEA WINS, CAN I BE A PART OF MAKING MY IDEA COME TO LIFE?
Absolutely. POC welcomes you as part of the strategy and development process to make your idea a reality.
HOW IS MY APPLICATION JUDGED?
Each application will be judged on the following criteria:
Does it align with the mission of the Papitto Opportunity Connection to empower people of color in Rhode Island by creating success for them in education, job skills training, business, healthcare or housing?
Is your idea realistic and feasible?
Will your idea change the lives of people of color in Rhode Island?
How creative is your idea?
WHO WILL JUDGE THE APPLICATIONS?
There will be two rounds of judging. The initial applications will be judged by a sub-committee of the Papitto Opportunity Connection Advisory Board – which consists entirely of members of Rhode Island’s Black, Indigenous and People of Color communities. The top 15 entries will then be judged by a panel of three individuals, including the managing trustee of POC and two others not affiliated with the Papitto Opportunity Connection.
WHEN CAN I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION?
Applications are accepted between January 10, 2023, and March 31, 2023.
WHEN WILL THE WINNER’S BE ANNOUNCED?
Winners will be announced at an event in May 2023. Further details to be announced.