Goodyear is funding 15 full scholarships at the University of Akron starting this fall as part of a new job readiness program for underserved students.
The Akron tire maker is committing $1.6 million to The Driving Opportunities Scholars Program.
The money will provide full tuition and fees for 15 undergraduates over the next three years. The first five students will be enrolled this fall, the company and university said in a news release. Five more students will be selected in each of the following two years.
Selected freshmen will represent a “wide range of underrepresented communities in the workplace and will be enrolled in a training and mentoring program for up to five years,” according to the release.
Scholarship recipients will be eligible to interview for internships at Goodyear. They will receive a laptop provided by Goodyear, and will have opportunities to interact at the company headquarters and with a Goodyear corporate mentor.
There will be an application and review process for the scholarship program, with high school students who preferably have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher, competitive ACT or SAT scores, come from a socially disadvantaged background, and be the first generation member in their family to go to college. The process also will include submitting an essay and a one-minute video describing their interest in the program, and completing an interview.
A selection committee will review applications and conduct the interviews.
The new scholarships will be focused on the following majors: accounting, chemical engineering, computer science, computer engineering, CIS, finance, marketing, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, sales, and supply chain.
“Inclusive opportunities are needed to build a diverse workforce to help corporations succeed, both today and in the future. Driving Opportunity will nurture the growth of underrepresented students as they expand their skills, build a professional network and create a career path,” Richard J. Kramer, Goodyear chairman, CEO and president, said in the release. “Beyond funding student activities and scholarships, our funding will also support the program coordination, coaching and mentoring to students throughout their UA education.”
Goodyear is a dedicated corporate and community partner, UA President Gary Miller said.
“We are deeply grateful for the investments they make in our university and the incredible opportunities they give to our students,” Miller said. “The Driving Opportunity Scholars Program will allow our students unprecedented access to seasoned professionals and exciting internship opportunities that are sure to be life-changing.”
Goodyear has funded other University of Akron initiatives. They include: The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company Fellowship in Polymer Science; the Goodyear Executive Leadership Forum; the Anthony J. Alexander Professional Development Center; STEM Day scholarships; the Black Male Summit; the Dr. Frank L. Simonetti Endowed Scholarship; and the Business Analytics Innovation Summit. The company has supported other fellowships and scholarships.
Goodyear also supports advisory boards in the colleges of Business Administration and Engineering and Polymer Science.
Goodyear has the oldest continuous student award at the university, the Goodyear Fellowship in Polymer Science, which started in 1931 by P.W. Litchfield.
For more information about the new scholarship program, visit https://uakron.secure.force.com/form?formid=217829
Jim Mackinnon covers business. He can be reached at 330-996-3544 or [email protected] Follow him @JimMackinnonABJ on Twitter or www.facebook.com/JimMackinnonABJ.