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To: Kalamazoo Promise Executive Director Bob Jorth

Because I Overcame Homelessness, They Denied Me A Scholarship. Help Me Appeal.

Congratulations! Zaviona Woodruff was granted a full ride to Oakland U! Because of community support like yours, she was able to make her college dreams come true.

https://fox17online.com/2018/07/30/oakland-u-gives-kalamazoo-graduate-tuition-grant-after-missing-out-on-promise/

Thank you,
Color Of Change

Because I Overcame Homelessness, They Denied Me A Scholarship. Help Me Appeal.

Help Me Appeal Kalamazoo Promise Executive Director's decision to deny me the scholarship I need to go to college.

Why is this important?

Hi,

I am Zaviona woodruff and I live in Kalamazoo Michigan. My family has overcome so much such as homelessness and the Kalamazoo Promise scholarship will make a college education for me a reality. I learned that I will not be reviving the Kalamazoo Promise scholarship because my family experienced and overcame homelessness only to learn that we were mislead about still living in the Kalamazoo district. Even though I still went to Kalamazoo Public Schools and should have been eligible, Kalamazoo Promise Executive Director Bob Jorth denied my scholarship on a technicality even though they look at each student on a case by case basis.

Without the Kalamazoo Promise which gives students like me who went to Kalamazoo public schools to have their tuition completely, or partially, paid off, I can't afford my college dream on my own.

My dad is a single father to my two younger sisters and me. He never graduated high school; in fact he went to Loy Norrix and dropped out but went back for his GED. He did not go to college but has always stresses the importance of it. He has jumped from job to job trying to make a safe, stable home for us though sometimes we have hardly enough to get by. While we have always had a roof above our heads,sometimes my dad just didn't have enough for much else. College, always his dream for us, is going to be something I will have to find a way to pay for myself.

In the middle of my 10th grade year, my family and I lived in a homeless shelter after we were evicted from our home. At the homeless shelter we were, thankfully, still in the KPS District and had a bus to and from school. We spent about 2-4 months at the homeless shelter. We even spent Christmas there. Stay at the shelter was an experience that has taught me that people can not take for granted the possessions that they have. I had to share a room with my father and two little sisters. Imagine-if you have siblings- sharing a room with them and your parents. There we two bathrooms one upstairs one downstairs. These bathrooms were shared with everyone in the shelter. After a certain time you had to in your room, lights off really. No more roaming around or getting cold water from the refrigerator.

After staying in the shelter for those months, my dad found an apartment complex called Big Bend. He applied for a three bedroom, two bathroom apartment for the four of us. The leasing agent employee there assured my dad that the apartment complex was indeed in the KPS district. They lied. Big Bend is not in the Kalamazoo Public Schools District; these apartments are in the Comstock District. Imagine our disbelief and disappointment when we were denied a bus to and from school and were told at registration for enrollment in KPS that we lived in the Comstock District. That was my Junior year and I knew that at that point I would be losing the one thing that was going to help me get through college: the Kalamazoo Promise.

Even though my family was lied to, that i continued to go to KPS, that I continued to bust my ass in school I don't get any money to help with college. I was planning on attending Oakland University this coming fall but I don't know anymore. Taking out loans could hurt me more than help me. I just wanted to share this with someone. Anyone who could help. I have so many teachers backing me up, some many people who would give recommendations. I don't know what to do.

Kalamazoo, MI, USA

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Reasons for signing

  • Sign the petition to get her scholarship back!
  • The denial was an unnecessary act of cruelty, totally lacking in compassion, which is something you would not expect from true educators.
  • It takes a village

Updates

2018-08-01 11:22:34 -0700

Petition is successful with 288 signatures

2018-07-27 16:25:51 -0700

100 signatures reached

2018-07-27 13:54:47 -0700

50 signatures reached

2018-07-27 13:19:59 -0700

25 signatures reached

2018-07-27 13:10:57 -0700

10 signatures reached