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RAMM set to honor 'outstanding' youth
By Thomas V. Bona
Rockford Register Star
Another set of young black scholars will be honored by a local organization later this month.
The Rockford Association for Minority Management will recognize a group of high school seniors who have excelled in academics, community service and
While officials aren't yet saying how many scholars there will be, the number is comparable to the 32 that won last year. There were about as many applicants as last year's record 75, said RAMM Marketing Chair Becky Cook Kendall.
"It was difficult for the committee to make a choice because there were so many outstanding applicants," Cook Kendall said. "I can't say enough about the fact that students look forward to being considered for the RAMM scholarships. That's why we continue to get the high numbers."
In its history, RAMM has awarded more than a half-million dollars in scholarships to nearly 425 winners.
The scholars are from Winnebago County schools. They typically get between $1,000 to $1,500, depending on many donations RAMM gets each year. Cook Kendall said the public recognition is even more important to winners than the money.
"It is using education as a launching place and a linchpin to your future," she said.
She said there was a big increase in male applicants this year, which she finds encouraging. Men have generally been underrepresented, she said.
The keynote speaker at the banquet is Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, the largest and oldest community-based movement devoted to empowering blacks economically and socially.
"A strong investment in cultivating and nurturing the African-American community's up-and-coming leaders and thinkers represents a strong investment in our nation's future," Morial said. "After all, these talented young professionals are the future Marian Wright Edelmans, Cornell Wests, Jesse Jacksons and Dick Parsons of our nation. They will be the drum majors who carry the civil rights movement through the 21st century and beyond."
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