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Tom Schwarz Scholarship

1 winner$500
Next Application Deadline
May 17, 2022
Next Winners Announced
Jun 13, 2022
Education Level
High School, Undergraduate
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
HIgh school senior or undergraduate
Business, finance, hospitality, entrepreneurship, or marketing

The leaders of the future are all around us, studying as students and exploring their passions.

Tom Schwarz is a 20-year US Navy veteran and 24 year retired high school Marketing/Entrepreneurship teacher and DECA Advisor. Over the course of his two careers, he has started seven different non-profit businesses, and his passion lies within his service to his country, community, and students.

Through strong ambition and desire to give back to their communities, students can bring about change in both big and small ways through business-related careers. To encourage the future leaders in the fields of business, marketing, entrepreneurship, hospitality, and finance, the Tom Schwarz Scholarship will support one student from Georgia.

High school seniors and undergraduate students are encouraged to apply. In your application, explain how you will give back to the community that supports you and your career goals.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Need, Boldest Profile
Published January 19, 2022
Essay Topic

Operating a business is a civic responsibility: how do you plan on giving back to the community that supports you through your career?

400–600 words

Winning Application

Skye Richardson
Georgia State UniversityDouglasville, GA
“I knew you weren’t full Black because you’re respectful and well-spoken, unlike other Black people,” is one of the first things my manager said to me when I was hired at Chuck E. Cheese in 2019. As a Black woman, this microaggression cut deep and was the moment I realized the hospitality industry needs more Black women in management positions. Therefore, I decided to major in hospitality administration and do what it takes to make the necessary changes to create a more diverse and comfortable work environment for Black women. My upbringing consisted of being loved and supported by a community of Black women, so my passion is to give back to the community by pushing for diversity in hospitality. I will contribute to the hospitality industry’s diversification through my dream career as a fashion event coordinator. I will be responsible for planning, organizing, and executing events such as fashion shows, product launches, and fashion week parties. Ultimately, my objective is to make the business field more inclusive and use my hospitality and marketing skills to spread the positive message of acceptance through these fashion events. I will include Black women as spokespeople, models, caterers, and more. Unfortunately, the hospitality and events industry lacks diversity, which can deter other minorities from pursuing careers in the industry. In addition, some people allow their biases to affect their hiring decisions, leading to Black women being passed up on job opportunities. My actions will contribute to advancing the career of Black women by supporting their businesses and allowing them to showcase their expertise. Once I begin coordinating events that highlight Black women, this will encourage other minority groups to join the hospitality and events industry and lead to a more robust and diverse hospitality industry. I have begun my journey of empowering Black women in college by becoming a member of the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality. This organization aims to educate minority students on the profitable opportunities of pursuing a career in hospitality. Participation in this club also leads to networking opportunities to become familiar with professionals, who are people of color, in the hospitality industry. I will utilize the connections I have made in this organization in my career to assist me in booking flights, venues, performers, and more. One thing I love about being a Black woman and being surrounded by a community of Black women is the beauty in our versatility. We could wear our hair out and have our natural curls flowing one day, have our hair in a slick ponytail the next day, and then have braids the following day. No single look defines what a Black woman should be because we can do it all. Moreover, Black women confidently create, wear, and advance many fashion trends from alternative-punk to casual streetwear. Although we usually get left out of trends, despite being the pioneers, we are the inspiration behind many of today’s beauty standards. As someone who has experienced first-hand racism working in hospitality, I know the struggle of feeling unwelcomed and uncomfortable at work. Black women deserve to have a space where they can express themselves, be appreciated, and be unapologetically them, and my fashion events will provide them with that opportunity.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 17, 2022. Winners will be announced on Jun 13, 2022.

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