A new scholarship program aims to help women further their education, boost their earning power and enhance their lives. Sponsored by the Hernando County Republican Party, Her Next Step scholarships are available to women 24 years of age and older who are full-time residents of Hernando County and registered Republican voters here.
“These are women who may have gotten married, raised children, or taken care of elderly parents – in other words, life got in the way,” said Mary Mazzuco, Hernando County Republican Party State Committee Woman. “They are not making as much money as they need to, and they’re at a time in their lives where they are saying ‘Oh I should have gone to college or have learned a trade.’”
According to Mazzuco, the scholarship program is the result of brainstorming by the Hernando County GOP to find a way to provide meaningful financial assistance to women “of a certain age,” as well as to boost the business community’s awareness of their potential.
“We’re helping people help themselves,” she said.“We don’t care where you go to school or whether you want to be a welder or a hairdresser or complete more education, whatever you want to pursue.”
Biological women 24 years of age and older, who are U.S. citizens, full-time residents of Hernando County, and registered Republican Hernando County voters are eligible to apply for Her Next Step scholarships.
Applicants are individually reviewed and objectively scored by an independent committee based on need, work experience, vocational, trade or technical training, financial need, community activities, and recommendations.
Scholarships are awarded in the minimum amount of $500 and are payable to any Florida-based accredited academic, vocational, trade or technical institution in the name of the student.
To eventually boost scholarship grant amounts, the Hernando County Republican Party is also welcoming contributions to the scholarship fund.
“Eventually we would like to see a (scholarships) nest egg of $10,000,” Mazzuco said.
Blaise Ingoglia, Hernando County Republican Party Chairman and State Representative (District 35), commented, “Once again, the Hernando County Republican Party is proving that we care about our community. Our State Committeewoman Mary Mazzuco should be commended for all of her hard work fulfilling this need in our county.”
For more information about Her Next Step scholarships visit www.hernextstep.org or the Pasco-Hernando State College (PHSC) website at https://financial-aid.phsc.edu/financial-aid-options/scholarships