FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: , Public Education Director, 303-426-8900
April 22, 2010
Denver, Colorado - April 22, 2010 - The Anthony Welmas Scholarship Fund was established with the American Indian College Fund to honor the legacy of Anthony A. Welmas, a member of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, a skilled musician who played the organ, piano, percussion instruments, and accordion, and a man who was devoted to his family and his tribe who believed that education was the key to success for American Indian people and their communities.
As part of the scholarship fund, 105 students will receive scholarships to pursue their educational dreams. Fifty-four scholarships will be awarded to students attending tribal colleges and universities; 25 scholarships will be awarded to students attending mainstream institutions; and 26 scholarships will be awarded to students pursuing their graduate or professional degrees at mainstream institutions.
To qualify for the scholarship, students must be a member of a federally recognized tribe with proof of enrollment; be studying in an associate, bachelor, or graduate degree program at an accredited college or university for 2010-11 and provide proof of their status; have demonstrated academic achievement with a 3.0 grade point average or higher; and submit a complete application with grades, course listings, financial need analysis, and an essay by the deadline.
Romina Duran, Anthony’s sister, said, “Anthony always put the rest of us (his siblings) first and foremost. My fondest memory of him is Anthony in his room listening to his music with his earphones on and playing his tambourine, which he taped up because of the noise.”
Robert Pennington, Jr., Anthony’s brother, said, “We miss Anthony each and every day, but now through this program his memory will live on. I hope for a long time to be donating to this fund. I would like each person who benefits from this program to take the time to think about Anthony. He always talked about helping Native American peoples, not just his tribe. If you take part in this program, always remember to do your best in everything you do and try to help others as Anthony Welmas did.”
Richard B. Williams, the American Indian College Fund President and CEO, said, “The foresight and giving nature of Anthony Welmas embodies the Native philosophy of making decisions based on how our actions will affect seven generations into the future. Mr. Welmas considered how he could help all Native people achieve their dreams and impact their communities in a positive way, and as a result, his life will change the face of Indian Country. Anthony Welmas lived a life that is an example, a beacon of hope, and the embodiment of how all people should aspire to walk on this earth.”