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If you are a regular reader of this blog, you can see that I like to explore youth’s involvement in public service both on the military and civilian side. A few of the posts explore ways of connecting to youth in a more meaningful way to get them more connected to the notion of service. Aside from all the marketing things that can be done to make government cool, one thing that will sway top talent towards these types of careers is money! Be on the lookout for new legislation being introduced to create scholarships similar to ROTC for those wanting to engage in public service on the civilian side.
“The Roosevelt Scholars Act would supply the government with another tool to use in competing with the private sector for the next generation of top-flight talent.” The quote was from Senator George V. Voinovich (R-Ohio), working together with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) to introduce this legislation that would establish the program.
The selection process, conducted by a nonprofit foundation created by the legislation, would be a rigorous one; the first year anticipates to award only 50 scholarships. The future Roosevelt Scholars would win a scholarship that would cover full tuition and a stipend for living expenses and books. The amount of the scholarship would vary depending on the school attended, but the maximum annual award would not exceed $60,000.
Top educators from some of the leading universities had this to say about the Roosevelt Scholarships “the scholarship would attract top students from our nation’s leading universities to solve some of the most difficult challenges facing America and the world today.”
This is good news, hopefully this type of program would give the private sector some competition and bring public service back into the minds of youth. The scholarship is a great idea, but it will be interesting to see what other programs and initiatives will be created to encourage and motivate youth that were not recipients of the particular scholarship.