FAU’s Kenan Social Engagement Program Announces Scholarship Winners for 2022

WHC building

by Bethany Alex | Monday, Feb 21, 2022

Florida Atlantic University’s Wilkes Honors College (WHC) is pleased to announce the 2022 Kenan Social Engagement Program scholarship recipients. This year’s Kenan Scholars – Andrea Carey, Matthew Pacheco and Morgan Balsey – were chosen through a competitive selection process to launch social ventures that they conceptualized and planned in the fall 2021 semester in a social entrepreneurship course taught by program co-directors Timothy Steigenga, Ph.D., professor of political science at WHC, and Christopher Strain, Ph.D., professor of American studies at WHC.

AndreaCarey_KenanAndrea Carey, an undergraduate student studying political science, is the winner of a $10,000 seed grant for her venture, “Students 4 Scholarships.” “Students 4 Scholarships” addresses the struggles that students in low-income communities face in finding scholarships and other funding opportunities needed to attend college. The venture utilizes a tiered fee system for assisting high school students in creating winning scholarship applications, providing essay writing and individualized instruction in students’ areas of need. Carey worked with teammates, Breana Hanley and Alice Brossard, to write and pitch the winning business plan for 2022.

MatthewPacheco_KenanMatthew Pacheco received $2,500 in startup funding for his team’s venture, “Tutor it Forward.” “Tutor it Forward” is a one-for-one tutoring service that exists to democratize tutoring and break the long-lasting impacts of poverty on students in Palm Beach County. Pacheco is a fourth-year neuroscience student who plans to graduate this spring and focus on research endeavors at the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI).

MorganBalsley_KenanMorgan Balsley also received $2,500 in start-up funding for her venture, “A Market for Change.” “A Market for Change” works to place undergraduate students with nonprofit organizations, in internship-type positions, to enhance their profile and promote their mission. The venture seeks to provide training and experience to students interested in marketing, filling a need for financially stretched nonprofit organizations. Balsley is a sophomore pursuing a double major in business and psychology. She intends to pursue a career in marketing after she completes a master’s degree in a related discipline.

Each year, the Kenan Social Engagement Program enters agreements with nonprofit community partners where students engage in academic service-learning opportunities. As part of this program, students write business plans for their own ventures, or for ventures tailored to serve the mission of the community partners.

Community partners that have participated in the Kenan Social Engagement Program include: the El Sol Neighborhood Resource Center, a day-labor center founded to aid the immigrant community in northern Palm Beach County; The Lord’s Place, a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of homelessness in Palm Beach County; the Palm Beach County Food Bank, which provides food for area food pantries and soup kitchens; the Town of Jupiter; Easterseals Florida, a national organization that provides community-based services for people with disabilities; Mind & Melody, which implements uniquely designed music therapy programs for clients with neurological impairments at health care facilities, nursing homes, day centers, and assisted living facilities; Path to College, a mentoring program designed to help at-risk kids apply to college; Quantum House, a home that lessens the burden for families with children are receiving treatment for severe medical conditions; and Busch Wildlife, a wildlife rehabilitation and environmental education organization. 

The Kenan Social Engagement Program is now in the 10th year of operation and continues to be funded by a grant and endowment by the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust. 

For more information on the program, visit www.fau.edu/honors/visitors/kenan-social-engagement-program.php.

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