Toyota is partnering with Rainbow PUSH Excel to provide $75,000 scholarships to 10 deserving engineering and business college students through the Jesse L. Jackson Sr. Fellows Scholarships. In addition to the scholarships, Toyota is offering these students the opportunity to work at one of their facilities across North America to gain valuable real-world experience, as well as be paired with mentors from Toyota management to help guide them through the next three years of college.
“The scholarship recipients were selected from hundreds of applicants,” Simon Nagata, chief administrative officer, Toyota North America, noted in a statement. “Toyota is proud to recognize and invest in the outstanding academic achievements of these 10 scholars. The commitment to community service and personal excellence of these future leaders is truly inspiring, and we are excited to be a part of their journey.”
With STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) professional jobs going unfilled, Toyota is preparing to fill the pipeline with qualified candidates. The scholarships were awarded to college students who are majoring in either STEM or business academics, states Toyota.
Students also had to demonstrate participation in community service and a financial need. The $25,000 scholarship is renewable each year for a maximum three-year period. In order to receive the award each year, the students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 throughout the school year.
“We are extremely proud of these students and are passionate about lifting any burden or obstacle that may prevent these distinguished students from reaching their highest potential,” added Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., founder and president of Rainbow PUSH Coalition. “Students who prove themselves capable and eager deserve every opportunity within reach to become all they set out to be in life. We thank Toyota for their generous support and for sharing in our vision to improve the academic lives of these students.”
The selection process was both rigorous and comprehensive. A group of 20 student semi-finalists went through a structured selection process which involved written essays, letters of recommendations, and rounds of onsite interviews involving several members of Rainbow PUSH Excel, as well as Toyota’s executive and management teams in Northern Kentucky.
As part of the selection process students took an in-depth tour of Toyota’s largest vehicle manufacturing facility in North America, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky Inc. in Georgetown, Kentucky; were guided through the various disciplines of running a local Toyota dealership; and through management and employee discussions learned about the local and global history of Toyota.
The group was narrowed down to 10 students who were awarded the scholarships. The students’ studies range from chemical to mechanical engineering to business finance and marketing; while hometowns stretch from Chicago to Cameroon, Central Africa.
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