San Bernardino City Unified School District (SBCUSD) students in the Class of 2021 spent their entire senior year in distance learning, having to overcome difficulties such as distractions at home, slow internet, and a host of other issues. But despite all of that, the SBCUSD Class of 2021 walked away with $11,031,077 in scholarships and grants, and many of them have already started college.
A total of 209 Cajon High School seniors earned $3,713,914 in scholarships and grants, which includes $1.5 million in military scholarships and enlistment bonuses. Arroyo Valley High School seniors also showed their academic chops with 385 graduates, or 73 percent of their graduating class, earning $3,266,600 in scholarships, including a four-year military scholarship.
“San Bernardino City Unified graduates have a distinct advantage over many other area graduates when it comes to earning scholarships,” said Chief Communications and Community Engagement Officer Ginger Ontiveros. “In addition to competing against seniors of area private and charter schools for the many scholarships available to graduates across the state and nation, SBCUSD graduates are eligible for hundreds of scholarships just for seniors in our District.”
At San Bernardino High School, 100 graduates earned $1,359,680 in scholarships and grants, and 136 of San Gorgonio High School’s graduates earned a cumulative $1,159,817 in scholarships and grants, including $513,996 in military scholarships and signing bonuses. A full 100% of Middle College High School’s 68 graduates shared in $970,000 in scholarships and grants.
Rounding out the scholarship and grant numbers are $386,480 earned by 112 Pacific High School graduates, $112,150 earned by 59 San Andreas High School graduates, $33,300 earned by 82 Indian Springs High School graduates, $18,986 earned by 17 Sierra High School graduates, and $10,150 earned by 10 Inland Career Education Center graduates.
The District has a long-standing partnership with the non-profit San Bernardino Community Scholarship Association, which coordinates local donors who have created scholarships just for SBCUSD graduates. Each scholarship has its own criteria. Some are for graduates of specific high schools, some are for students pursuing a career in education or medicine, while others reward students for their community service efforts during high school.
“What all of the Association scholarships have in common,” said Association President Blythe Anderson, “is that you must be graduating from San Gorgonio, San Bernardino High, Pacific, or one of the District’s other amazing high schools to apply.”
The Making Hope Happen Foundation, a non-profit supporting the District’s educational mission, awards $3,000 mentor-supported college scholarships to approximately 100 SBCUSD graduates each year. What makes these scholarships unique is that in addition to money, scholarship recipients are paired with a mentor, who is an upperclassman in college and also an SBCUSD alum, to help guide them through the college experience, helping them register for classes and navigate this new phase of their lives.