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Coke gives ASU $50,000 scholarships grant

From left, Coca-Cola Georgia/Florida Zone Manager Jim Winkler, Albany State University President Everette Freeman and Coca-Cola Director of Government Relations Shannon Hennessey are shown during a presentation Friday at which the company gave ASU a $50,000 grant to be used for four First Generation Scholarships.

From left, Coca-Cola Georgia/Florida Zone Manager Jim Winkler, Albany State University President Everette Freeman and Coca-Cola Director of Government Relations Shannon Hennessey are shown during a presentation Friday at which the company gave ASU a $50,000 grant to be used for four First Generation Scholarships.

ALBANY, Ga. — The Coca-Cola Foundation on Friday presented Albany State University President Everette Freeman with a $50,000 check to be split among four ASU students as First Generation Scholarships.

The Thurgood Marshall College Fund Coca-Cola HBCU (historically black college or university) First-Generation Scholarship is funded through The Coca-Cola Foundation.

“At Coca-Cola, we believe education has a major impact in building lives and sustaining communities,” Coca-Cola Georgia/Florida Zone manager Jim Winkler said. “These folks will be the first in their families to achieve a college degree. Each time the Coca-Cola First Generation Scholarship program is established at a new college or university, we’re able to help more students fulfill their dreams of pursuing higher education.”

The scholarship can be used for tuition and additional fees.

“Coca-Cola truly represents the true meaning of corporate responsibility at its very best,” Freeman said. “The scholarship will meet the urgent needs of our students, so they can focus on course work without dealing with the burden of worrying about how to pay for classes.

“I know how important this is because I am a first generation college graduate.”

To apply for the award, students must be a U.S. citizen, enrolled as a full-time incoming freshman at ASU and earn at least a 2.8 grade point average on a 4.0 scale.

All applicants must also qualify as a first generation college student and submit an essay entitled, “What Does It Mean To Be The First Person In Your Family To Receive A College Degree.”

“We’re appreciative of Coca-Cola and the Thurgood Marshall College Fund for investing in our students,” said Clifford Porter Jr., ASU vice president for institutional advancement.

The Thurgood Marshall College Fund is the only national organization to provide scholarships, programmatic and capacity building support to the nation’s 47 public Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

To date, the organization has awarded more than $200 million in such assistance to its students and member-schools.