For DonorsFor Applicants

Abu Omar Halal Scholarship

4 winners, $1,000 each
Application Deadline
Dec 1, 2023
Winners Announced
Jan 1, 2024
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school senior, undergraduate, or graduate student
3.0 or higher
Financial Status:

There are countless students across the country who are interested in continuing their studies but need financial assistance to do so.

With college costs growing rapidly, more and more students are unable to afford to pursue their dreams of higher education. While student loans are an option for some, many students are wary of taking on such high debt at a young age after witnessing the growing student debt crisis.

This scholarship seeks to support students who are in great need of financial aid so they can afford to attain a college degree.

Any low-income high school senior, undergraduate, or graduate student who has at least a 3.0 GPA may apply for this scholarship, but first-generation students, applicants who display leadership qualities, and students who have community service experience are preferred.

To apply, tell us about yourself and how you plan to make a difference through your career.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Need
Published August 28, 2023
Essay Topic

Please tell us a bit about yourself and how you plan to make a positive impact on the world through your career.

400–600 words

Winning Applications

Angela Otuokere
The University of Texas at San AntonioSan Antonio, TX
My name is Angela Otuokere and I am a first-generation senior at the University of Texas at San Antonio, majoring in Marketing. From the moment I began college, I always knew that I wanted to pursue Marketing as it perfectly aligned with my passions of creativity, strategy, and connecting with people. I was originally a pre-med major, yet I pondered daily about the realities of what my college journey would look like if I took on the chance of changing my major to something that I truly loved. Deep down, I knew I would be pursuing the career path that allowed me to reshape the way that we perceive media and highlight marginalized voices and stories that aren’t heard. Once I switched my major to Marketing, the first thing that I began to do was find a community with like-minded individuals who also shared the common goal of becoming strong professionals in the field. The American Marketing Association became a beacon in my college experience where I have been able to connect, learn, and grow in the profession I am pursuing. Through my various leadership positions in the organization, including becoming the President, I was able to coordinate guest speaker events from influential marketing leaders, execute impactful professional development workshops, and advocate for the awareness of increasing diversity within the marketing field. Currently, black marketers make up about 7.2% of the marketing industry. I am striving every day to continue to increase that percentage by inspiring change and sparking the narrative. I hope to showcase a positive representation of minorities in marketing and increase diversity in the field. By investing in my education, this scholarship will not only enable me to complete my degree but also empower me to be a catalyst for change. I am passionate about being a trailblazer for future generations of aspiring marketers from underrepresented backgrounds. Through my journey, I hope to inspire others to pursue their dreams fearlessly, despite financial constraints, and to showcase the transformative power of education. Through my marketing studies, I envision creating campaigns that not only promote services and products but also advocate for social change. My mission is to utilize my skills to amplify the voices of unheard communities, fostering inclusivity and representation within the marketing industry. My career goal is to work with organizations that prioritize diversity and inclusion, actively contributing to a paradigm shift in the marketing sector.
Jacqueline Gayden
Texas State UniversityAustin, TX
My name is Jacqueline, but everyone calls me Jackie. I am a 17-year-old senior in high school. I love drawing, dancing, and spending time with family and friends. I plan to attend Texas A&M University and major in animal science. When I have completed my Bachelor's degree I plan to pursue further education in veterinary medicine to become a veterinarian and eventually open my practice. I plan for my lasting impact to spread further than just the clinic by utilizing my passion and ambition to aid animals and the community through advocacy, education, and further research. I plan to be a vocal supporter of the increased welfare standards for all animals through policymaking and raising the community's ethical standards. Creating legislation holds owners accountable for their actions and allows reporters of animal abuse situations to know that their concerns aren’t left without investigation. In addition to supporting legislation to increase the acceptable living standards for animals, I plan to advocate for legislation for affordable and more accessible healthcare for all animals. Although many domestic pet owners love their animals, the high expenses of veterinary care can cause them to go without veterinary insurance and not get their pets the care they deserve, like yearly exams and vaccinations. Policymaking also creates discussions within the community which will in turn create unity among pet owners, advocates, and the general public. The general public is more informed about laws when new ones are introduced and therefore that could create a positive dynamic where if community members see animal neglect they will know to evaluate it and call on the knowledge of the animals that do not have a voice themselves. My commitment to the increase of animal welfare also includes educating owners as they are the ones who care for their pets day to day. Education based on required nutrition, activity levels, attention, etc for different species/breeds can improve an animal's life greatly causing them to live longer and healthier lives. Overall animal health is important to humans as well. I plan to work with experts to resolve interconnected health issues affecting humans and animals by eradicating diseases that cause serious health problems in all organisms. I hope to have the opportunity to engage in programs that aid regions of the world with little to no access to veterinary care. In essence, my goal as a veterinarian is to innovate existing and new ways to ensure the protection of all animals. I want to go further than just the veterinary clinic because to cause real change you need to branch out from traditional ways.
Meagan Harmon
University of California-Los AngelesLos Angeles, CA
Zeus Ramirez
Saint Joseph's UniversityPhiladelphia, PA
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2020, nearly 18 million people, including 5 million children, lived in what’s considered “deep poverty’’–a household with a total income less than 50 percent of its poverty threshold–and in 2022, 37.9 million people lived in poverty. Many individuals, including children, and families suffer from poverty, and I plan to tackle this issue through its financial aspect. My pursuit in finance and accounting studies is a significant step toward understanding and leveraging financial instruments to create positive tangible change for underserved communities and individuals living in poverty. Many of these communities and individuals face barriers in understanding and managing their finances, hindering their economic progress, but through education, guidance, and practical assistance, I’m breaking down these barriers by empowering individuals with financial knowledge and access to vital services like tax preparation and loan repayment plans. By delving into financial instruments, I’m acquiring the tools necessary to uplift communities and individuals. The knowledge in this field holds immense potential to bridge economic disparities, create access to resources, and foster financial stability for countless families and individuals in need. Understanding these instruments equips me to navigate complex financial systems, allowing me to devise strategies that directly benefit these communities. Specifically, I’m currently training to obtain the Advanced VITA certification with Congresso de Latinos Unidos to prepare tax returns for underserved families in Philadelphia. Once I get my certification, I’ll be directly helping underserved people by providing them with crucial financial services. Tax preparation might seem routine, but for families living in poverty, it can significantly affect their financial well-being, as tax refunds or taxes owed affect their finances. People sometimes owe amounts that are too much of a liability for their financial position, so advising with preventive strategies towards these issues, such as redoing their W-4, may improve their next tax bill. My role as a Beginner Backend Coder in the app Finiverse at the Wharton Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance engaged directly in creating solutions that impact financial accessibility. This endeavor aimed to streamline payment plans, making them more manageable and accessible for students navigating the complexities of repayment for student loans, and to spread awareness for loan forgiveness opportunities. By combining technological innovation with financial acumen with the Finiverse team, I can enhance the efficiency and accessibility of repayment plans, easing the burden on students, especially those from underserved or low-income backgrounds. Through my university’s Investing Club, I'm gaining fundamental knowledge in money allocation for growth or for hedging against economic conditions, such as inflation. Although I can’t directly apply this knowledge to aid others, as I lack many qualifications to be able to advise people on investment matters, I’m still preparing myself by learning about the intricate realm of the securities markets to properly advise underserved individuals or families once I get my licensures and certifications after graduating. Guiding people on how to invest their money can help them with their individual financial goals, such as steady but safe growth with treasury bonds. To conclude, through this dual approach—combining academic study with practical training—I’ll be enabling people living in poverty to navigate the financial landscape more effectively. I’m not just learning about financial instruments theoretically; I’m actively engaging with communities to apply this knowledge in meaningful ways. These efforts contribute to positively impacting individuals, families, and communities and will only become more effective and significant as I continue my academic journey and begin my career.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Dec 1, 2023. Winners will be announced on Jan 1, 2024.

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