OSU and Portland-based SEI sign scholarship agreement to help Portland teens

Oregon State University and Portland-based Self Enhancement, Inc. (SEI), a nonprofit organization supporting at-risk urban youth, have partnered to create a fund totaling $70,000 in annual awards to help disadvantaged and under-represented teens to attend college.

“SEI has a proven track record working with at-risk youth, and Oregon State looks forward welcoming them to the OSU community and being a part of their continued educational success,” said Kate Peterson, assistant provost for enrollment management at Oregon State.

SEI serves thousands of students each year in the greater Portland area. SEI partners with teachers and school administrators to identify children most at risk. Students in the program primarily come from Northeast Portland, and more than 96 percent are African-American. The program builds relationships with high schools, and assigns an educational coordinator to work with each individual student.

SEI has a proven track record, with a 98 percent high school graduation rates, and more than 85 percent of graduates continuing on to pursue higher education or occupational training.

“The opportunity that these scholarships provide for our students to continue to further their education helps our agency reach our ultimate goal, which is producing positive, contributing citizens,” said Hopson Jr.

Individual students can receive up to $7,000 per year in an award year, which makes it close to the $8,000 given to Presidential Scholars, one of Oregon State’s most prestigious scholarship programs.

~ Angela Yeager

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