Ds Scholarship

Women in Focus gears up for 36th Annual Scholarship Ball honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Each year, Women In Focus Inc. , a local nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the education of students of color in the Madison community, “I Have a Dream” ball in January at the Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the “I Have a Dream” scholarship ball will once again be held for the 36th anniversary of Women in Focus.

“This is going to be the 36th annual ‘I Have a Dream Ball’, and we’re really excited about that,” Gloria Reyes, President of Dream Ball 2022 told Madison365. The special Women in Focus event will take place on Saturday, January 15, from 6-10 p.m. and will be part of MLK’s many weekend activities. “It was a really tough decision to have a virtual event again this year when we were hoping to be together. We felt it wasn’t safe enough to get everyone together yet.”

Women in Focus Inc.

Women in Focus, Inc. was founded. First introduced in 1983, it is a Madison-area organization of women who are passionate about one mind in promoting educational excellence and the healthy development of children of color. In 1986, the organization hosted its first scholarship ball in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr..

“The women under the microscope are all powerful leaders in our community and they have come together to truly help our young people achieve their dreams,” says Reyes. “This is really powerful and it is a strong message that our young people are receiving. Of course, financial support is important because these young students are trying to navigate college and pay for tuition and books and all the expenses that come into play when you go into the challenge.

“We want to be a part of that journey and support our youth,” she adds.

Early image of Women in Focus Inc. from the eighties

The Women in Focus 36th Anniversary Virtual Scholarship Ball will feature music composed by DJ Drew Masters. The event moderator will be Diana Wright, a longtime radio personality and “Women in Focus” member. The event will also be an opportunity to present the WIF 2022 Awards ‘Inspiring a Dream’. Other local celebrities and former WIF researchers will include at the event:

Naman Siyad

• MC Portia Adney, actor, teacher, WIF member
• Dr. Carlton Jenkins,
MMSD Supervisor
• Attorney Naman Siad, WIF Scholar 2011
• Terence Carey, comedian in Second City,
WIF Scholar 2011
• Danielle Karim, singer,
WIF Scholar 2020

“We look forward to hearing from some of our former students at the event and from various local celebrities who will talk about Women in Focus, specifically, the “I Have a Dream” ball and fundraising to support our students through scholarships,” Reyes says. “It’s a very special event for us as we are honing the talents of our students of color in Dane County and really raising and highlighting the importance of a college education and how important it is to build a stronger community.”

For the first time ever, Women in Focus Inc. In-person VIP viewing party for a limited number of people to come together to enjoy the event at Ballroom B at Monona Terrace on Saturday, January 15, 6-10 p.m.

“It will be a small gathering in Monona Terrace – it will be open for about 50 people. Anyone who wants to come and support our dream ball, we will have a big screen and we will watch the action virtually from Monona Terrace,” says Reyes. “We will have dinner and drinks. It would be a really great event to bring some people together while keeping in mind the social distancing and COVID-19 regulations.”

All money collected in Women in Focus Virtual 36th Anniversary I Have a Dream Scholarship Ball It will fund undergraduate scholarships for students of color including scholarships in honor of Jan and Al Studesville, Ms. Gloria Jones-Bey, and Dr. Virginia Henderson.

Women in Focus is currently inviting Dane County High School seniors and students of color to apply for the 2022 Women in Focus Scholarship. The deadline is Tuesday, February 15th. Application forms can be found here. An essay, two letters of recommendation and a transcript are required. women in focus It usually gets about 45-50 applicants and has awarded 12-14 scholarships annually in recent years.

“We have been able to provide scholarships worth over $500,000 over the past few years thanks to our sponsors and Women in Focus donors,” says Reyes. “The I Have A Dream scholarship is very important because it honors one of our wonderful leaders, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Receiving a scholarship in his name is truly touching.

“It is also really impactful because it is a community scholarship that the student offers. It really sends a message that education is important, university is important and our community is invested in the future of our youth,” says Reyes. “I think that really means a lot. As someone who has received a scholarship from a community organization [Centro Hispano of Dane County]Well, that really means a lot. It is much more than just a financial contribution. Society says they believe in you and want to invest in your future.”

The event is virtually free to attend. Organizers at Women in Focus are asking community members to consider making a donation to the WIF Scholarship Fund, which can be made by submitting 56651 and following the instructions or by clicking here.

For more information about Women in Focus 36th Anniversary Virtual Dream Scholarship 36th Anniversary, via email Gloria Reyes, Dream Ball 2022 chair, at reyes81169@gmail.com.

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