Union Bank Scholarships
San Diego County Farm Bureau Selects 20 Students to Receive Union Bank Scholarships for Fire-Impacted Farm Families
July 31, 2008
ESCONDIDO, CA - The San Diego County Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee recently selected 20 deserving in-college and college-bound students to receive funds from a special $25,000 grant provided by The Union Bank of California Foundation.
The Union Bank Foundation, a nonprofit public benefit corporation, presented San Diego Ag in the Classroom with the $25,000 grant in January 2008 specifically to help the children of farmers and farm workers who were impacted by the devastating October 2007 wildfires that swept through San Diego County. The funds were allocated to students of farm families entering or attending a two- or four-year college or university with any declared or undeclared major to help them stay on their educational path while their families recover from losses related to the fire and get their lives back in order.
"It was heartbreaking to see the amount of loss these families suffered," said Janet Silva Kister, Scholarship Chair for San Diego Ag in the Classroom, the educational arm of the San Diego County Farm Bureau. "We hope that this scholarship money will help in some small way to bring a little normalcy back into their lives."
"San Diego County's farm community was hit harder than any other business sector," said Kathy Patoff, Vice President and Foundation Officer for The Union Bank of California Foundation. "These scholarships will help to provide a safety net to those families whose livelihoods were affected and who still have a long recovery ahead."
San Diego County Farm Bureau is a nonprofit trade organization with more than 7,000 members. SDCFB has operated since 1913 with the mission to represent San Diego County agriculture through public relations, education and public policy advocacy in order to promote the economic viability of agriculture balanced with appropriate management of natural resources. In 1999, the San Diego County Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee created a scholarship program with the goal of encouraging students to pursue a career in agriculture and to assist those who are currently pursuing an education in agriculture. Since the program's inception, the Scholarship Committee has awarded nearly $135,000 to 115 students.