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Johnnie M. Parris Public Service Scholarship

Funded by
1 winner$760
Application Deadline
Nov 1, 2023
Winners Announced
Dec 1, 2023
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Field of Study:
Education, Political Science, Social Justice, Law
African American
Education Level:

While representation has been increasing in recent decades, underrepresented minorities still face inclusion issues in many public service sectors. As a result, this leads to an unequal distribution of political leadership in the shaping of the country.

In government, for example, underrepresented minorities in the House of Representatives are based on the proportion of the U.S. population that is African American, yet there is only one Black governor, and only three ever elected in US history. There are only three Black senators. Similarly, just 5% of all lawyers are African American even though 13.4% of the population is Black. In order to boost representation in the key field of public service, more support is needed for underserved populations.

Any African American from Florida that is an undergraduate holding a 2.5+ GPA and looking to pursue a degree in education, political science, social justice or law can apply to this scholarship.

To apply, please discuss why you chose your major and your future career goals.

Selection Criteria:
Impact, Essay, Drive
Published July 28, 2023
Essay Topic

Please discuss why you chose your major and your future career goals.

400–600 words

Winning Application

Taylor Morancy
Florida International UniversityHollywood, FL
Everyone has a purpose or “calling” in life. We all just “unlock” it at different times than others. My calling began with an error on my course selection sheet in tenth grade. I accidentally signed up for a class called Constitutional Law. I always liked law, but I never thought I would take it in high school. This was during eLearning, so I thought I was going to dread having the class but to my surprise, my teacher made me find my love for law. He looked quite scary until he spoke, and I believe that despite COVID-19 ruining my sophomore year, I had a positive outlook on it and on what I wanted to do with the rest of my life because of him. I always wanted to become a lawyer; I never knew what type of law I would pursue but I knew I always wanted to become an attorney. I always loved to think outside of the box and find solutions to problems that my teachers and friends would find quite complex. However, during my senior year, I had to choose a major for college and I didn’t know what to pick since all I knew was law. My friends describe me as someone who is very helpful and who likes to speak up for others and I did research on majors to find out that Public Policy is the best major for me. I like to serve others and I can help provide solutions to communities that are facing complex issues. Fortunately, I was an overachiever in high school, and I was able to take AP/AICE/Dual Enrollment/Honors and every rigorous course I could find in order to transfer 50 college credits to Florida International University. This left a lot of space on my schedule for college which gave me an opportunity to take several other classes and programs. Currently, I am a double major in public policy and political science on a pre-law track. I added political science because of the complementary skill it provides to public policy, and I want to pursue government. My pre-law track contains a pre-law certificate that will have me take rigorous courses that will prepare me for law school. Going to law school isn’t the end goal for me. I participated in a summer legal program with the University of Miami and I kind of know what to expect in law school. I want to work as a lawyer but utilize my law degree as leverage as a method of going into politics. I do not care where I end up: city government, state government, or federal government. All I know is that I want to make a difference somewhere. I have participated in advocacy where I went to the Florida State Capitol with students from all over Broward County, FL and we advocated for higher teacher pay and students utilizing their 100 work hours to get Bright Futures. The sky is the limit for my future goals because I am a very busy person and I like to have a multitude of tasks to complete. I despise having nothing to do and if I have free time, I will occupy myself with a hobby. My hobbies are currently: reading, basketball, football, video games, and volunteering. I am currently volunteering with ReadingPals and I will help children K-5 learn to read and become adequate readers. Ultimately, my major, being an attorney, and being a politician “called” me. I believe that the sky is the limit for where I am going, and I hope to inspire others to make changes.
Janaysa Dorcin
American Senior High SchoolMiami, FL


When is the scholarship application deadline?

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

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