Las Floristas has been funding scholarships since 2000 by providing financial assistance for scholars at community colleges, universities, trade, and vocational schools as well as graduate-level degrees. Many of these young adults would not be afforded the opportunity to attend higher education programs if not for the grants they receive from Las Floristas. As the program has grown, it has been divided into two facets: General Scholarships and Educational Grants.
For the General Scholarships, anyone who was a pediatric inpatient, or outpatient, participated in a Rancho-sponsored research program, or played on the Rancho Wheelchair Sports teams is eligible to participate. Students do not need to be on track to receive a degree and can take as little as one course per academic term. Funding is provided on a reimbursement basis. Students will need to show proof of enrollment at an appropriate academic institution and will need to complete a simple application each academic year. This process allows us to keep accurate records of the students enrolled in the program, their updated contact information, and their academic goals. Once approved for enrollment in the program, students may turn in original receipts for reimbursement of approved expenses. These typically include tuition, books, school supplies, parking permits, student fees, adaptive devices, and required software or academic subscriptions. We encourage students to work with their school’s department of disability services or related on-campus office to arrange for appropriate accommodations as needed. While Las Floristas is happy to reimburse for approved expenses, we also encourage students to apply for any school-specific scholarships aimed at students with disabilities as well as connect with resources offered through the California Department of Rehabilitation.
The Educational Grants program is more intensive and is designed for students who are taking a full-time course load and who are on track to graduate with a 4-year degree (or 2 for graduate-level programs). This program includes a more in-depth application process which includes two essays written by the applicant and letters of recommendation from appropriate teachers, physicians, therapists, coaches, etc. There are two fully funded scholarships, giving four years of guaranteed funding for a total of $42,500. These have been named the Joan M. Wismer Scholar and the Las Floristas Scholar. As funding is available, other often smaller grant awards are given out to eligible applicants. This application opens up in the Spring and is due no later than June 1st. Applicants are all invited to the annual Scholarship and Awards Dinner where the winners will be announced.
In June of each year, Las Floristas hosts the Scholarship and Awards Dinner for the children and their families thanks to the generous underwriting of the Kenneth T. and Eileen L. Norris Foundation. Not only do the Scholars get recognized but so do the athletes. This gives us an opportunity to celebrate newly awarded scholarships and other successes from the past year with students, their families, key staff at Rancho, and the Ladies of Las Floristas.
Any questions regarding the Scholarship or Educational Grants programs can be directed to Amanda at Amanda@LasFloristas.org or by calling or texting (562) 298-3508.
Scholarship Applications should be mailed to:
P.O. Box 579
Whittier, CA 90602