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Silas Silas Purnell Scholarship





The Silas Purnell Scholarship Fund was established by the Board of Directors of the EOA Foundation in 2000. Initial support was provided by two Foundation board members and the Illinois Chapter of EOA. Silas Purnell worked for Talent Search at the Ada S. McKinley Community Center, Chicago. He served needy and deserving students for 34 years and is known nationally as an advocate for equal access for low-income and first-generation students. He is directly responsible for thousands of students gaining access to, and succeeding in, higher education. Silas has many alumni who participated in his Talent Search Program in Chicago who have gone on to accomplish great things in higher education and in the private sector throughout the nation.


One award of $1,000, each year one or more chapters are eligible to receive this scholarship.  The scholarship awards are distributed based on the existing chapter rotation schedule. The applicant selected by the Chapter Scholarship Committee will be the recipient for that Chapter.  No further review occurs. 


The student applicant must meet the following criteria to apply:


  1. Be a current or former TRIO or EOP student;
  2. Demonstrate financial need as defined by TRIO criteria, financial aid award letter or other documentation of family financial status;
  3. Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.8 on a 4.0 scale; and
  4. Demonstrate involvement in co-curricular and/or community activities; and

The Nominator MUST be a current member of EOA at the time of the scholarship deadline. 

                               Silas Purnell Scholarship Recipients                             

2020 Seth Ellison Monroe Community College Upward Bound
Ingri L. Ramirez Martin Augsburg University SSS
2019 April White Northeast Iowa Community College Ryan Knight   Purdue Fort Wayne 2018 Zana L. Danner Carl Sandburg College Tronica Joab Mount Mary University SSS 2017 Jorge Umana Emporia State University TS Yayra Tamakloe Kent State University McNair 2016 Utah Ogbonna North Hennepin Community College, Brooklyn, MN
     2015    Janae Chunn Pontiac Academy for Excellence, Rochester, MI
  Carolina Brito Lake Michigan College, Dowagiac, MI
  2014 Stephanie Miller TRIO Student Support Services, Iowa Central Community College

EOA Foundation

The EOA Foundation provides scholarships and awards to TRIO and educational opportunity program students in the ten-state region served by EOA.


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