The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) of Los Angeles kicked-off its’ 33rd Annual 5K Walk for Education at Exposition Park Saturday August 15. A host of corporate sponsors, college organizations, youth and their families gathered to support the event, which raises funds to send more children to college and meet President Obama’s goal of regaining U.S. status as the number one country for college graduates by 2020.
UNCF Development Director and event organizer Carolyn Trader shared the value UNCF brings to communities across the county and emphasized the importance of prospective students applying to HBCUs. “The first thing for students it to find out what schools they want to attend, but we really want students to apply to HBCU’s. There are a lot of students who move to Southern California from the South, and we want them to know that they have a better chance by applying to college supported by the UNCF” Trader said.
High school students and Top Teens of America Camille Grundy and Nia Dodd supported their community as volunteers, passing out water to participants. “It’s a long walk, but it’s for a good cause for youth, Dodd stated.” It provides us with the right requirements necessary attend a college or university,” Grundy added.
Weslee Glenn, a post-doctoral scholar for the UNCF Merck Science Research Fellow, shared why the walk for education is so important, especially for African Americans pursuing education in science. “The UNCF Merck program is one of the few that offer fellowships for people across the country working in biomedical research or agricultural research. It’s very important I think to give validation to students and recognize them for all the good work that they do,” Glenn stated.
It’s all about scholarship and uplifting the community. We want to be here to support the UNCF and the funding that’s needed in order to support HBCUs,” an Omega Psi Phi member stated. UNCF Los Angeles has raised over $32,000 dollars and counting at this years’ walk for education and continues the quest to empower young students and help them achieve their collegiate and career goals.