Dining for Dollars event raised $24,000 for WSU’s Oportunidad Scholarship program.
The Oportunidad Scholarship will allow at least 12 more undocumented students to attend college.
OGDEN, Utah—Last week, a Dining for Dollars fundraiser at Sonora Grill raised nearly $12,000 for the WSU Oportunidad Scholarship fund.
A private donor matches the amount raised, so the Oportunidad fund will actually receive nearly $24,000 from the event.
Sonora Grill Owner Steve Ballard established this event four years ago in order to help minority students attend college.
“One of the biggest obstacles that they have to overcome is education,” Ballard said.
Ballard continued to say that these students often don’t qualify for federal or state money because of their undocumented status.
Ballard said, “It really creates a gap that I believe private business can then come in and help come over that because private business can award scholarships.”
The Oportunidad Scholarship fund allowed 12 students to attend Weber this past year, and several of the recipients said how thankful they were for the event.
Leticia Mata is an Oportunidad Scholarship recipient. She calls herself a “Dreamer.” Mata explained that Dreamers are students who don’t qualify for the FAFSA, but they still dream of going to college.
“So I just want to say thank you,” Mata said. “Without this scholarship, I wouldn’t be in college. I wouldn’t be the person I am now. I wouldn’t have gone so far without it.”
Several students from Weber went to Sonora Grill for the Dining for Dollars event. Members of Hispanics Area Council and Latinos in Action were there supporting the cause.
Oportunidad Scholarship Recipient Joaquin Zetina expressed his gratitude to those people who supported the event.
“I’m just grateful that there are people out there that are aware of the struggle and are willing to help,” Zetina said.
With the money Sonora Grill raised last week, 12 more student will receive full-ride scholarships in the next academic year.
For those students who are planning on applying, applications for the Oportunidad Scholarhip are due April 14.
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