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SDSM& T News
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 13, 2000
Tech Student Receives Gates Millenium Scholar Award
Tony Fischer, a junior in Mechanical Engineering from Eagle Butte, was one of more than 4,000 inaugural recipient's of the Gates Millenium Scholars Award. The amount of the award is dependent on each recipient’s financial need. Fischer was awarded $ 5,280 for the 2000- 01 academic year and is eligible to renew the award each year he is in school if he has financial need and keeps up a satisfactory academic record.
The Gates Millenium Scholars, started in the fall of 1999, is funded by a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and administered by the United Negro College Fund, in partnership with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the American Indian College Fund. The goal of the foundation is to increase the number of African- Americans, American Indians/ Alaska Natives, Asian Pacific Americans, and Hispanic Americans enrolling in and completing undergraduate and graduate degree programs. The program seeks to promote academic excellence as well as provide an opportunity for outstanding students to reach their fullest potential. There is a special emphasis on encouraging and supporting students in completing college in order to continue on and earn masters and doctorate degrees in disciplines that are underrepresented by ethnic and racial groups.
" The best and the brightest students shouldn't be denied access to higher education simply because they can't afford it," said Bill Gates. " Melinda and I hope that this gift will not only benefit thousands of students, but also benefit America by empowering a diverse generation of leaders who otherwise might not have a chance."
In order to be eligible to be nominated for the GMS, individuals have to be: African- American, American Indian/ Alaska Native, Asian Pacific American or Hispanic; residents of the US; have a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or higher on a 4.0 scale; have applied to, have been accepted into or are enrolled full- time in an accredited college or university; have significant financial need; and have demonstrated leadership ability through participation in community service, extracurricular activities or other activities.
For the inaugural year, nominations were open to eligible high school seniors applying to college; currently enrolled undergraduate students; as well as individuals applying to or already enrolled in graduate school in mathematics, science, engineering, education, or library science for the academic year 2000- 2001. More than 62,000 students were nominated for the scholarships this past year and 4,100 students were selected.
Tony has been involved in Phi Eta Sigma ( freshman national honor society), Mini Baja, the American Indian Sciences and Engineering Society, and he will soon be inducted into Tau Beta Pi ( engineering honor society). After he graduates, Tony would like to work for an agricultural company -- an idea that came from growing up on a farm near Eagle Butte.
( I: univrel/ pressrel/ 2000 09/ Sandgren)
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Devereaux Library. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.