The Oprah Winfrey Scholarship Program works differently then other scholarship programs, and the Oprah scholarships will not be unclaimed scholarships by any stretch of the imagination because of her celebrity status which is known for her philanthropy and humanitarianism. Oprah Winfrey has set up (3) different charities which she designates scholarship monies for other scholarship programs of her choice at various colleges and schools.
The (3) Oprah Winfrey Charities which Oprah Winfrey runs and operates through, to provide her scholarships are:
OPRAH WINFREY FOUNDATION
This Foundation is the private foundation which is under the direction of Oprah Winfrey. This foundation is Oprah’s pride and joy. According to the most recent filing, the Oprah Winfrey Foundation has total assets of $172 million. Recently, Oprah Winfrey placed $36 million of her own money in the Foundation, which in turn distributed $8 million to numerous educational, arts and medical venues to be used for her Oprah Winfrey Scholarships. This organization normally will not accept donations from the public. If the public wants to support Oprah Winfrey-related philanthropic work through donations, you would be directed to do so through the Oprah’s Angel Network (OAN) below.
OPRAH WINFREY OPERATING FOUNDATION
This Foundation is a private operating foundation whose current focus is operating the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa Program. The main focus is providing monies through endowments to South African schools only. Oprah describes the reason behind establishing this Foundation this way “I believe that one of a nation’s most important resources is its young people, and the key that allows young people to create a better world and a brighter future is education. Now, more than ever, it is vitally important for Africa,” said Winfrey. “Investing in the higher education of individual African women is an investment in positive change.”
OPRAH’S ANGEL NETWORK (OAN)
Oprah’s Angel Network grants awards to organizations and operates projects in under-served communities that provide educational initiatives as well as assist people in fulfilling basic human needs and regaining dignity. Because Oprah Winfrey makes a donation to Oprah’s Angel Network equal to its management and general as well as fundraising expenses, 100% of your donation goes toward program costs. This is the program the public is encouraged to provide donations for. The Angel Network is heavily promoted on Winfrey’s show for fans to help raise money for worthy causes.
Oprah Winfrey Scholarships Operate this Way
If a college already has a scholarship program for people who exhibit a strong financial need, Oprah may donate monies to that particular scholarship program. It must be specifically used for that scholarship program Oprah Winfrey donated the monies for, and it can’t be used for another scholarship program at that school unless it’s authorized by Oprah herself. The Oprah Winfrey Foundations put strong emphasis for empowering ethnic minorities who lack the funds to go through college, and especially women in particular. Oprah’s Endowments seem to sponsor scholarships that directly make an effort to tackle these two groups. Ms. Winfrey’s private foundation was originally established in 1987 to support the education and empowerment of women, children and families in the United States and around the world. Ms. Winfrey’s charities have awarded hundreds of grants to organizations that carry out her world vision.
Example of an Oprah Winfrey Scholarship Program
The Oprah Winfrey Foundation awarded $2.5 million endowment to New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service for the creation of The Oprah Winfrey Scholars Program for African Women. The program will allow African women to pursue graduate studies in public policy and management at the Wagner School. It is the first known of its kind at an American University.
How to Apply for a Oprah Winfrey Scholarship
If you want to apply for an Oprah Winfrey Scholarship directly, you cannot do so. You must contact the various colleges and universities in which the Oprah Winfrey Foundation has donated scholarship contribution monies to, and apply to that particular school. You can then fill out an Oprah Winfrey Scholarship application there. The Oprah scholarship will be augmented along with another similar scholarship program at that school (college or university or trade school). The scholarship will have more giving power and be better able to accommodate more students in terms of scholarship numbers and the amount of the stipend awarded to each student. Ask the college/university financial aids office which you are contemplating going to, if they have been awarded any monies from the Oprah Winfrey Scholarship Foundation, or simply search online for any school which received monies from the Oprah Foundation. If they have, immediately apply. It will surely not be an unclaimed scholarship, simply because of its notoriety.
Don’t let this discourage you from applying for it though!
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