Frequently Asked Questions
Why is this scholarship only for Black students when there are so many other under-resourced students?
The primary purpose of creating this scholarship is NewStory’s commitment to act in response to the resurgence of racial injustice towards Black lives. In this critical and historical juncture, we affirm, as followers of Christ and children of our Just God, that action must be taken to address 400 years of racial injustice against Black Americans. We can no longer sit silent. Words are not enough. We are compelled to actively participate in bringing about true racial justice and freedom for all.
Historically, the Black community has been hindered from receiving a quality education and opportunity due to lack of funds as a result of systemic racism -- such as being denied loans at a disproportionate rate or being given higher interest rates by financial institutions. We choose to directly address this inequality by advocating for Black youth aspiring to further their education or advance their career.
We recognize that there are other under-resourced communities that could benefit from the scholarship program. However, the NewStory Black Student Scholarship is about more than just providing under-resourced students with funds for further education. Given this historic time, NewStory Church is taking this intentional step towards righting wrongs and promoting equal advancement for Black youth.
What will happen to this scholarship after this year?
The NewStory Black Student Scholarship is a long-term commitment of NewStory Church to the Black community. For the 2020-21 academic year, the scholarship will be awarded at the start of the Spring term. After this academic year, the scholarship will be awarded at the start of the Fall term and may be expanded to include graduate students.
Will any priority be given to NewStory church members, or even to Christians?
Not necessarily. The NewStory Black Students Scholarship is for any Black student in the city of Los Angeles, and it will be awarded based on criteria as outlined in the scholarship application with a focus on need over merit. While we pray God works in the heart of each applicant, faith will not be a criteria for scholarship selection.
What will be the basis of selecting award recipients? What are the most weighted criteria?
The scholarship committee will review all applications holistically, taking into account stated educational/career goals, personal background, character, as well as financial need, to select those who might make the most of what is awarded. In addition, as much as possible, the committee will aim to distribute awards evenly across the trade/technical, 2-year, and 4-year applicant groups.
How else are we planning to respond to the racial injustices we see around us?
In addition to a scholarship program for Black students, we intend to develop a tutorial or mentorship program for the local community around the church and hope to engage with Black-owned businesses in the neighborhood. As the Spirit leads, we are even open to starting new scholarship programs for other under-resourced communities of color.
How can I, as a member of NewStory, contribute toward bringing about racial justice?
Thank you for asking! Here are several concrete ways to participate:
- Give. Donate toward the Black Student Scholarship fund at newstorychurch.com/give.
- Volunteer. Join the team to (1) develop the tutorial/mentoring program, (2) be a part of the NewStory Black Student Scholarship Resource Center to help walk students through the application process, or (3) help us develop a long-term funding strategy!
- Dream! Send us your ideas of engagement with the Black community. We believe the different giftings, passions, ideas, and participation from within the body of Christ is critical for us to develop proactive and intentional engagement toward racial justice.
Please contact us at email@example.com if you’d like to participate!