McDonald’s Corporation announced the expansion of the McDonald’s HACER National Scholarship from five to 30 winners, providing more Hispanic students the opportunity to obtain a college degree. Scholarship applicants have the opportunity to directly receive up to $100,000 to help finance their tuition, and will be selected based on their academic achievement, community involvement, and financial need. The scholarship application period opens up on October 22 and runs through February 4, 2019.
Despite Hispanic high school dropout rates declining to 12 percent and the overall college enrollment rate increasing to 35 percent, just 15 percent of Hispanics between the ages of 25-29 have completed a four-year college degree. For many, the high cost of attending college continues to be the number one obstacle to completing their higher education. McDonald’s is using its scale for good and working to alleviate this education gap by offering programs and tuition assistance in order to help today’s youth achieve their career and education goals. By expanding the McDonald’s HACER National Scholarship, McDonald’s continues to build even more opportunities for growth and educational attainment within the Hispanic community.
“I’m truly honored to see how the McDonald’s HACER National Scholarship has evolved through the years, awarding $4.5 million in scholarships to-date,” says Richard Castro, a McDonald’s franchisee and founder of the McDonald’s HACER National Scholarship in 1985. “McDonald’s commitment to the Hispanic community includes opening doors for Hispanic youth to pursue higher education and support students on their path to success.”
The expansion of the HACER National Scholarship underscores McDonald’s continued investment in the future of Hispanic youth and in the potential of those that come to work every day at McDonald’s restaurants. Over the past year, McDonald’s Corporation has reinforced this commitment through new initiatives and enhancements to existing programs, including:
Youth Opportunity—global effort starting in Chicago that aims to reduce barriers to employment for two million young people by 2025 through pre-employment job readiness training, employment opportunities and education programs.
Archways to Opportunity—a $150 million investment in the Archways to Opportunity Education Program, which provides eligible employees at participating U.S. restaurant an opportunity to earn a high school diploma, receive upfront college tuition assistance, access free education and career advising services and learn English as a second language. Archways to Opportunity also provides access to the high school completion program and advising services to immediate family members of restaurant employees. Since its launch in 2015, the program has increased education access for over 33,000 people and awarded $42 million in high school and college tuition.
“Hundreds of thousands of young people dream about getting an education and finding the right pathway to pursue a career they are passionate about. All too often they face hurdles along the way including financial challenges, lack of advising support or in some cases limited English proficiency,” says Melissa Kersey, McDonald’s U.S. Chief People Officer. “McDonald’s has the unique opportunity to remove some of those barriers through our expanded HACER scholarship investment and by offering a suite of education, training and employment opportunities to help young people realize their fullest potential.”
College-bound high school seniors and their parents are encouraged to visit http://mcdonalds.com/HACER for additional college resources in English and Spanish and for details on how to apply to the McDonald’s HACER® National Scholarship.