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Five MassBay Students Awarded One Family Scholarships

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

WELLESLEY HILLS (October 19, 2016)—MassBay Community College is pleased to announce that five students have been selected for the One Family Scholars program by One Family Inc. of Waltham. The students selected are; Daisy Escobar of Waltham who is studying Accounting, Crystal Farrell of Marlborough who is studying Hospitality Management, Melisar Nambatya of Framingham who is studying Human Services, Danielle Ramos of Framingham who is studying General Science Studies and enrolled in the Surgical Technology program and Patricia Bonanno of Ashland who graduated in May with an Associate degree in General Science Studies and will continue her studies this fall at Worcester State University in their Nursing program. Ninety students from across Massachusetts will be enrolled in the One Family Scholars program this academic year, which provides a combination of both individualized coaching and scholarship funds.

“Raising young children as a single parent while working towards your college degree is no small feat,” said MassBay Community College President Dr. David Podell. “We commend these extraordinary women on their dedication, hard work, and academic achievement. The One Family Scholarship will provide them with the much-needed financial support to finish their degree and open a world of additional opportunities for themselves and their children.”

One Family aims to prevent family homelessness and break the cycle of family poverty in Massachusetts by promoting pathways to economic independence though advocacy, education and innovation. One Family Scholars are low-income single parents enrolled in Associate or Bachelor’s degree programs at colleges and universities in Massachusetts. One Family provides comprehensive individualized coaching coupled with other supports to enable these students to reach their goals. In addition to coaching, One Family Scholars receive both a scholarship that helps to offset the direct costs of college (tuition and fees) and a stipend to help with indirect costs (books, supplies and living expenses).

“The five Scholars who were selected from MassBay came from one of our most diverse and talented applicant pools in years,” said One Family’s Director of Programs Matthew Miller.” I think it speaks volumes about the kind of students MassBay attracts and the incredible work these students have done to make it this far in their education. We at One Family are looking forward to supporting their continued success.”

The impact of the program has been dramatic. Over the past 15 years more than 300 Scholars have earned college degrees and, as a result, over 600 children have been impacted by their parent’s educational achievement. There have been nine MassBay Community College students awarded the One Family Scholarship in the past 2.5 years. Last spring, MassBay Liberal Arts student Linda Arena had been selected for the One Family Scholar program and is now continuing her education at Wellesley College with the support of the One Family Inc.

“MassBay students who have been accepted into the One Family Scholars program have excelled, many have graduated and gone on to a four year college for their bachelor’s degree,” said MassBay Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Alumni Relations and Executive Director of the MassBay Foundation Mary Shia. “One Family scholarships have and continue to empower our scholars—we could not do all we do without them as a partner.”

Patricia Bonanno is a single mother of three daughters ages 13, 10 and 7, living in Ashland. She graduated from MassBay in May with her Associate in Science degree, is currently enrolled in MassBay’s Certified Nursing Assistant program and will continue her studies this fall at Worcester State University in their Nursing program.

“Because I’m a single mom of three beautiful daughters, this scholarship means I’ll be able to finish school and focus on my career without the stress of paying back loans,” said Bonanno. “I’m excited to begin the Nursing program at Worcester State this fall and with the support of MassBay and the One Family I know I’ll achieve my goal of becoming a nurse.”

Daisy Escobar is a single mother of an 18-month old daughter Luna, living in Waltham. She is pursuing an Associate degree in Accounting. Her educational and career goals include transferring to UMass Boston next fall after she earns her Associate degree, to continue her education in Accounting and earn her Bachelor degree.

“I hadn’t heard of the One Family Scholars before coming to MassBay and applying for a Single Parent Scholarship, but I’m beyond thrilled and thankful that I did and I’m able to continue my studies without financial pressures of tuition,” said Escobar. “I want to thank Mary Shia for informing of this scholarship opportunity and the One Family for this incredible opportunity. This scholarship is going to help me achieve my goals and provide a solid foundation for my daughter.”

Crystal Farrell is a single mother of 2-year old daughter Maia, living in Marlborough. She is pursuing an Associate degree in Hospitality Management here at MassBay, with plans of transferring to a 4-year institution to earn her bachelor degree. Her future career goals include working in hotel management at a Walt Disney Resort.

“My daughter is my whole world,” said Farrell. “I am working hard on my education and my future to provide her with the best life possible, so she does not have to know what it’s like to struggle. I feel truly blessed that I can continue my education without the worry and stress of paying off school loans when I complete my degree.”

Melisar Nambatya is a single mother of a 3-year old boy Elijah, living in Framingham. She is pursuing her Associate degree in Human Services with plans on earning her bachelor and master’s degrees in Social Work. Her future plans include becoming a social worker to help others.

“This scholarship and the opportunities that come with it will make my vision and my dream of being a college graduate and work in the human services field a reality,” said Nambatya. “I couldn’t be happier to be awarded this scholarship, as it will change my and my son’s future.”

Danielle Ramos is a single mother of a 3½-year-old son Kymoni, living in Framingham. She started attending MassBay after her son was diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis and she thought she would take some Science classes to learn more about how this would affect his body. Ramos credits her success to the guidance and support she received from the Student Development Office at MassBay and a professor of Early Childhood Education.

“Never thinking a college degree would be an obtainable goal for me, I now see it is and I can finally achieve my dreams of becoming a college graduate,” said Ramos. “My son inspires me every day, never letting his disease stop him from anything. The One Family Scholarship is allowing me to focus on my son and my studies without the financial stress that college can create. I will forever be grateful to this organization for securing my educational and financial future.”

One Family is a non-profit organization dedicated to ending family homelessness in Massachusetts. Since their founding in 1999, their mission has been to collaborate with elected officials, faith and community leaders, businesses and foundations, and higher learning institutions to develop and implement innovative programs that reverse the widespread, chronic effects of poverty and strengthen lower-income and homeless families. Their missions grows out of a core believe that no parent and child should be without a place to call home in such a richly resourced state.

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