Students preparing for careers in the automotive industry may be eligible to receive financial awards ranging from $1,000–$4,000 through the 2012 SEMA Memorial Scholarship Fund (SMSF). The scholarship application requires college transcripts and letters of recommendation and is now available at www.sema.org/scholarships.
Since the fund's inception in 1984, it has awarded more than $1.5 million in scholarships to more than 600 students engaged in studies leading to careers in the automotive aftermarket or related fields.
“Paying for a high-quality education is a challenge for many people, particularly in today’s tough economy,” said Jamie Eriksen, SEMA education director. “SEMA is pleased to play a part in helping students prepare for careers in our industry. The specialty-equipment industry is innovative, dynamic and holds many opportunities for the next generation.”
Unlike financial aid and student loans, the SEMA Memorial Scholarship is a one-time award that does not have to be paid back. Awards are granted to eligible applicants based on academic achievements, work experience, community involvement, essay content and recommendations. Students may re-apply each year, provided that they still meet the eligibility criteria.
A loan forgiveness award is also available to recent graduates who are working for SEMA-member companies and paying off existing student loans. Details and applications for both the scholarship and the loan-forgiveness awards are available at www.sema.org/scholarships.
Winners will be notified in the summer of 2012. Scholarship payments are sent directly to the student’s college, university, trade or vocational school to help offset the cost of tuition. Loan-forgiveness payments are sent directly to the financial institutions.