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Wednesday, Jun 7, 2023

Funds Help Local Schools, Students Pursuing Professions

BEST SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMS Telesis Community Credit Union The old adage warns that money isn’t everything, but it’s a sure bet that money problems can interfere with anyone’s quality of life. So goes the thinking behind many of the charitable efforts from Telesis Community Credit Union, which has made education a focus of its gift giving. The Chatsworth-based credit union, which has been providing scholarships for more than six years, this year provided some $9,000 in funding to community colleges and local high schools. Program: Brownie troops are taught financial literacy. This year’s recipients included College of the Canyons, Los Angeles Valley College and Moorpark College. The high school recipients, who this year received $7,500 of the total scholarship funding, are seniors in the credit union’s service area who have achieved a 3.0 GPA or better and have exhibited a strong commitment to community service. The credit union also partners with other agencies and schools, providing programs that encourage financial awareness and literacy. One such program, “It’s a Habit,” produced by Sam Renick’s It’s a Habit Co., has worked with Brownie troops to teach the children financial literacy. “Part of our mission statement is that, as a credit union, we take our role as not just a place to put your money but to make sure our community has a better life,” said Richard Cooper, vice president for government and community relations at Telesis. “We try to give people as many tools as we can so they avoid the pitfalls of managing money.” Shelly Garcia West Hills Hospital & Medical Center Nursing students will get a little help completing their course of study at Pierce College thanks to a scholarship fund set up by West Hills Hospital & Medical Center. The hospital has awarded a $95,000 grant to assist third-semester students who are on track to receive their associate degree in spring 2007. The funding will help cover the cost of tuition and financial living obligations while the students attend the nursing program. In return, the nurses agree to work at West Hills for one year. “Providing the funds for these students allows them to complete the last semesters of their study without interruption, reduces some stress and permits more focus in school,” said Janet Brooks, chief nursing officer for West Hills. West Hills officials say they currently have more than 50 nursing positions open as a result of the nursing shortage in California. The West Hills Hospital & Medical Center Auxiliary also runs a scholarship program that this year awarded about $50,000 in health care scholarships to students pursuing a range of health care professions from nursing to doctors to physical therapists, pharmacists and surgical technicians. The Auxiliary, which operates the hospital’s gift shop and has been running the program since 1967, uses those proceeds as well as those from other fundraising events for the scholarship programs. Some 36 students received awards in 2006. “As of next May when they give the 2007 scholarships, they will have reached the million dollar mark,” said Claire Plunkett, director of volunteer services. The scholarships are awarded based on need and academic performance, but Plunkett said that the primary yardstick is the students’ pursuit of a health care profession. Shelly Garcia

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