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Each year, as part of our mission to improve the academic achievement of Hispanics in Greater Cleveland, Esperanza grants scholarships to a number of students entering or continuing their college education. Since awarding our first college scholarship in 1983, the number of recipients has grown, with our most recent scholarship class consisting of 104 deserving and dedicated students. Our scholarship recipients attend schools all over, ranging from local schools in Cleveland to schools in New York, Pennsylvania, Hawaii, and more. All scholarships are provided through generous sponsorships from local business, organizations, and private donors.

Over the years, this scholarship celebration has turned into our annual Fiesta of Hope luncheon, which, in addition to presenting the year’s scholarship recipients, serves as an important fundraiser for Esperanza. The event features speakers from the year’s keynote, Esperanza staff and board, and a presentation of the recipients.

This year, all applications will be filled out and submitted online. To assist with application completion, Esperanza will hold open computer hours and provide workshops every Wednesday from 4-7pm with no appointment needed. You can also make an appointment for other hours by calling Zoraida Valentin at 216-651-7178. Once the application is submitted, the applicant will be scheduled for an interview on May 2nd or May 9th. (For a full listing of our scholarship timeline, check out our events calendar.)

After interviews are conducted and the recipients have been narrowed down, all recipients are invited to join Esperanza board, staff, and scholarship donors at our annual Pre-Reception. During this event, which is held a week before the Fiesta of Hope, scholarship recipients will be officially introduced to their scholarship sponsors. Additionally, this year, for the first time ever, the pre-reception will be hosted by the Esperanza Alumni Association (EAA) where all scholarship recipients will automatically become members of the association and have access to the Esperanza Alumni network.

For more information or questions, please email us at scholarships@esperanzainc.org or call Zoraida Valentin at (216) 651-7178.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Students must be residents of Cuyahoga and/or Lorain Counties in Ohio, USA.
  • Students must be born in a Hispanic country or have at least one parent who is fully Hispanic.
  • Hispanic students who are either American citizens or US residents that are Permanent Resident Card holders. DACA Eligible students are also eligible to apply.
  • Students must be graduating high school or be enrolled full-time in college and/or university.
  • Student must have Student Aid Report (SAR) that proves that the FAFSA was filed. For DACA Eligible, student must have TAX return Form.
  • Students must have achieved a minimum high school grade-point average of 2.5 (based on 4.0 scale) at the time of application.
  • High school students must have participated in extracurricular activities and school or community service.
  • High School Students must take either the SAT or ACT and provide a copy.
  • Students must complete and fulfill the requirements listed in the application.
  • Applicants will be evaluated based on their academic achievements, quality of personal statements, recommendation letters, individual interviews, and family income.
  • Family Income must not exceed $60,000 per year. Applicants whose family income is higher than $60,000 shall be evaluated on a case by case basis.

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