From the University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC):
For many teens in the University area community, a life of crime, gangs and violence determines their future.
The University Area Community Development Corporation (UACDC) works to provide educational, recreational and life-skill development programs for youth so they can break this vicious cycle and experience hope for a better tomorrow.
The Victor D. Crist Community Opportunity Scholarship program was announced at the June 12 annual Awards Banquet presented by the UACDC and the University of South Florida Area Community Civic Association (USFACCA), which honored Chairman Crist for his 32 years of volunteer service in the University area community.
Donations from the event will go toward the college scholarship fund. Approximately $21,000 was donated at the banquet with the USFACCA matching the first $10,000.
“Commissioner Crist has always been passionate in recognizing the importance of making educational and developmental resources available to help the youth of our community achieve self-sustainability to break free from poverty,” said Dan Jurman, UACDC executive director and chief executive officer. “With 95 percent of those we serve living below poverty level, this scholarship will allow an at-risk teen the opportunity to break the poverty cycle.”
Crist has dedicated himself to the University area community. He has served as volunteer chairman of the UACDC board of directors for 15 years and a president of a civic association in the University area for 32 years, starting as the founder of the Off-campus Housing Association in 1980 and assuming the presidency of the USFACCA in 1990.
“I’m honored to have my legacy recognized in this scholarship program as I retire as a voting member of the UACDC board of directors,” Crist said. “We’ve come a long way toward realizing the dream of revitalizing the University area community, and I’m privileged to have been part of such an incredible transformation. I’ve always said that dreams are achieved by those who believe, and I’m grateful to all the believers that will continue to make it happen.”
Jurman will develop a committee to partner with Hillsborough Community College and USF to establish scholarship criteria. The first scholarships will be awarded in May 2013 to youth from the University area community. The UACDC recently established a GED scholarship program and is currently awarding 50 scholarships to cover the cost of GED classes.
“Attaining a high school diploma is the first step toward self-sufficiency,” added Jurman. “And we’re excited to be able to announce the Victor D. Crist Community Opportunity Scholarship and take it to the next level.”
To donate to the Victor D. Crist Community Opportunity Scholarship program, email Sue Hutson at firstname.lastname@example.org.