When Miguel Ruiz’s teacher first suggested he apply for scholarships through BCF, he was not even planning to attend college. Fear of carrying student debt and intimidated by the process as a first-generation student, Miguel says he had put himself in the mindset that attending college was not going to be possible.
“Sometimes students like me close the door to possibilities because of all the barriers already around them,”says Miguel. With the support of dedicated BCF staff and Corvallis High School teachers, Miguel submitted scholarship applications, never believing he would receive the awards.
The owner of a small business in high school, a solid student, and well respected by his peers, Miguel already embodied the ideal future leader. It was not until he was walking up on stage, when his name was called at the awards dinner, that Miguel knew he would be going to college after all. Now a freshman at Linn Benton Community College, Miguel is studying Heavy Equipment and Diesel Mechanics, with the goal of someday owning his own shop.
Since its inception, the Benton Community Foundation has worked tirelessly to build a better future for our community. Nothing embodies this mission better than the scholarships awarded each year to deserving students in Benton County and beyond. With 84 scholarship funds, the BCF scholarship program has awarded more than $1.8 million to students since 2015.
BCF scholarship donors know that an investment in education for local students is an investment in our economy, our community, and our future. Like Miguel, each recipient is on their way to becoming the entrepreneurs, helpers, educators, artists, and leaders that make our community great.
Miguel continues to thank those who support him and others like him. “My teachers at CHS, and the staff at BCF helped me to see what I want to do and know that I can do it. That really makes an incredible difference to someone like me.”
If you would like to support students like Miguel, contact email@example.com to learn more.