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Scholarship Funds and No Takers

Can you imagine that there are scholarship monies available to people who show no interest in it?�� I mean come on - free money and no takers? That is apparently the unfortunate case in St. Joseph Missouri.�� Residents of low income housing are being offered $2000 scholarships to attend college, but over the last 5 years, there have been no takers.

Today, the fund has about $188,000 - enough to pay tuition for 94 residents at the Pleasant Heights Apartment Complex, 2902 S. 36th St. But St. Joseph Housing Authority officials say no one has asked for a scholarship in at least five years.

Only eight people have applied for a scholarship since the fund was set up 14 years ago using excess profits from basic television cable that all residents are required to pay. Unused, the scholarship money has been tapped by housing officials in recent years to pay for playground equipment and upgrade equipment in the complex's computer lab.

Sharon Hope, housing authority director, said she hasn't seen much interest in higher education at Pleasant Heights. The average resident is a single white female with school-age children.

Word has now spread among residents - a few of whom said that they intend to apply for the scholarship.�� I would imagine that anyone who had an opportunity like that would take advantage of the availability of such a program. Earning your associates degree for example can make you more employable, and open doors for career advancement.

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