June 1, 2006

Girls Inc. of Metro Denver To Award $55,000 In Scholarships


Bonnie Trowbridge
btrowbridge@girlsincdenver.org
(303) 893-4363 x 102
Denver, CO - Girls Incorporated of Metro Denver will honor seven outstanding young women tomorrow as the recipients of scholarships awarded through the Girls Inc. Helen McLoraine Scholarship Fund. The announcement and presentations will be part of the organization's annual Celebration Luncheon, held at the Girls Inc. west Denver campus on June 2nd from noon to 1:30p.m.

The Estate of Helen McLoraine endowed the organization with a $1 million scholarship fund in 2004. Earmarked for girls who have participated in Girls Inc. of Metro Denver programs, the awards will provide a total of $45,000 in scholarships each year, providing six girls with resources to achieve or continue higher education. However, this year, a total of $55,000 in seven scholarships will be awarded because there were funds left over from last year's awards.

Three $5,000 Teen Leadership Scholarships will be awarded to high school students who exhibit leadership in Girls Inc. programs and in their communities. This year's winners are Crystina Anderson (George Washington High School), Burke Luerssen (Denver School of the Arts), and Linh Le (Career Education Center - DPS).

Typically there are two $10,000 Strong, Smart, and Bold Scholarships awarded each year, however this year, there was extra funding due to left over funds from last year. As a result, three $10,000 scholarships will be given out to outstanding high school girls who have participated in Girls Inc. programs. The recipients are Danielle Barksdale (Overland High School), Jessica Obi (George Washington High School), and Amber Wilson (Ridge View Academy).

The Helen McLoraine Scholarship is awarded to a former Girls Inc. participant who is currently enrolled as a full-time student at an accredited post-secondary educational institution. This year's $10,000 award will be presented to Ameila Martinez, who just completed her freshman year at the University of Denver.

"We are enormously proud of these young women, their accomplishments, and the futures they have planned for themselves," said Colleen Colarelli, president and CEO of Girls Incorporated of Metro Denver. "It is gratifying for our organization to be able to make a significant contribution toward turning their educational dreams into reality."

The keynote speaker for the Celebration Luncheon will be Aisha Douaidary, 18. Active at Girls Inc. since the age of six, Aisha graduated from the Career Education Center (DPS) last month. She received a Strong, Smart and Bold Scholarship last year and will talk about what Girls Inc. has meant to her over the years and what her hopes for the future are.
The mission of Girls Inc. of Metro Denver (GIMD) is to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold.SM GIMD delivers gender-specific programs to over 2,200 girls each year from across the Denver metro area. These programs equip girls ages 6 to 18 to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers and grow into healthy, educated and independent adults. The organization is an affiliate of the national nonprofit Girls Incorporated, whose research-based programs and expertise on girls’ issues date back to 1864. For more information, go to www.girlsincdenver.org.
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The vision of Girls Incorporated is empowered girls and an equitable society. We believe that girls have the right to bethemselves and to resist gender-stereotypes, to express themselves with originality and enthusiasm, to take risks, to strive freely, and to take pride in success, to accept and appreciate their bodies, to have confidence in themselves, to be safe in the world and to be prepared for interesting work and economic independence.

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