State Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, is announcing the 2014-2015 Conference of Women Legislators (COWL) Scholarship for mature women whose pursuit of a higher education was interrupted due to an unexpected family issue or financial matter.
“Years ago, as a newly single mother, I had to work two jobs, one on the night shift, to make ends meet. I realized that going back to college was the key to be able to provide a better quality of life and more opportunities for my family,” said Manley. “I encourage other women to do the same and apply for this scholarship to assist them in pursuing higher education.”
The COWL scholarship is open to Illinois women age 25 and older who plan to attend an accredited on-campus school in Illinois for at least six semester hours to earn their undergraduate education. Online colleges are not eligible. The goal of the scholarship is to focus on deserving, qualified women whose educations were interrupted due to family or economic hardships. Special consideration will be given to women who have shown leadership potential through volunteering, and those with plans to benefit women, children and communities with their degree.
The scholarship will cover tuition, books and fees up to $2,500 per year, including summer school. Applicants can access forms and instructions through Manley’s office, or by visiting www.cowlil.com. Application materials must be postmarked no later than March 31, 2014. All applicants will be notified by April 30, 2014.
“I firmly believe that education is critical to success,” Manley said. “In these tough economic times, I understand that households are operating on very tight budgets, so I hope that this unique financial assistance opportunity will be able to help some women achieve their higher education goals.”
COWL is a not-for-profit organization and a bipartisan coalition of women legislators in the Illinois General Assembly. Funds for the scholarship program are raised through private fundraisers held throughout the year, not through taxpayer dollars.
Manley is also co-hosting a free Financial Aid & Scholarship Seminar with state Rep. Larry Walsh, Jr. and the Illinois Student Assistance Commission on Monday, Feb. 24 at 6:30 p.m. at Joliet West High School located at 401 N. Larkin Avenue in Joliet.
For more information, please contact Manley’s full-time constituent service office at 815-725-2741 or RepManley@gmail.com.