Dallas College News Update

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Contact: Debra Dennis; ddennis@dcccd.edu

For immediate release — March 30, 2021

(DALLAS) — To assist college students with rising tuition costs, expenses and professional development, PepsiCo and its philanthropic arm, The PepsiCo Foundation, have selected Dallas College as one of the first four education partners in a new $40 million program to support Black and Hispanic students across the country.

Through this partnership, Dallas College is offering four types of need-based scholarships to help students obtain degrees or credentials in high demand fields. Scholarship recipients will also receive mentorship and leadership training from PepsiCo employees and will have the opportunity to apply for internships and jobs at PepsiCo.

Students who qualify can pursue four-year degrees or careers in the demanding fields of cybersecurity, information technology, business, advanced manufacturing and logistics. 

Dallas College is proud to align itself with PepsiCo as part of its commitment to creating and promoting a diverse and inclusive environment, said Lori J. Watson, senior director of relationship management for the Dallas College Foundation.

“Now more than ever, it is imperative that Dallas College continues to move the needle and open gateways to students to advance toward a baccalaureate degree. Through strategic and dynamic partnerships, we lower student cost, reduce academic and economic inequities, and create new opportunities for minority students to succeed in globally competitive environments,” Watson said.

“Education is a great equalizer that enables economic growth and upward mobility and helps build generational wealth that lifts up communities over the long term,” said PepsiCo Chairman and CEO Ramon Laguarta. “With this program, we are creating a differentiated experience for students that goes beyond scholarships by providing critical training, support and other services that will put them on the path to success. Last year, PepsiCo committed to using our resources to combat deep-rooted economic disparities that have long impacted Black and Hispanic communities. We’re proud to announce this community college program today as a key part of that effort.”

Dallas College serves more than 122,000 students annually, most of whom are Black or Hispanic.

“It is vital that our mostly minority student body is supported with tools to ensure they graduate with a certificate or degree that will help them in the future,” said Dr. Pyeper Wilkins, vice chancellor of workforce and advancement for Dallas College.

“Dallas College Foundation is excited to partner with PepsiCo in support of their commitment to lift up Black and Hispanic businesses and communities. As a community-serving institution of higher education, Dallas College is committed to removing barriers and closing the transfer gap to achieve equity not only in higher education but also in the workforce,” Wilkins said.

“Partnerships like these are essential in serving underrepresented communities, and we want to do our part to help,” Wilkins said. “PepsiCo’s community college program is a significant avenue for promoting diversity and inclusion in workforce development and technical professions, as education serves as a catalyst for social and economic mobility. We are proud to be a part of this important initiative, and we eagerly await the achievements of the PepsiCo scholars.”

The PepsiCo Uplift Scholarship has three types of scholarships open to students who are seeking two-year degrees or certificates.

They are:

  • Uplift Scholarship for Career and Technical Degree Programs provides scholarship opportunities to address educational and structural barriers to success for Hispanic and Black students, allowing them to earn college credit toward a two-year Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in an approved A.A.S. degree program. The scholarship program offers a broad range of training and services to help students complete education and obtain in-demand jobs with livable and sustainable wages.
  • Uplift Scholarship for Career and Technical Certificate Programs provides quality education and workforce pathways for Black and Hispanic students in the attainment of a technical certificate toward an industry-recognized credential. The scholarship program offers a broad range of training and services to help students complete education and obtain in-demand jobs with livable and sustainable wages.
  • Uplift Scholarship for Professional Continuing Education Certificate Programs provides quality education and workforce pathways for Black and Hispanic students in the attainment of a professional continuing education certificate toward an industry-recognized credential. The scholarship program offers a broad range of training and services to help students complete education and obtain in-demand jobs with livable and sustainable wages. Continuing education courses may be articulated into college credits.

A fourth scholarship, PepsiCo S.M.I.L.E. (Success Matters in Life and Education) Scholarship, opened earlier this year to help students transition from partner community colleges to four-year colleges and universities. Although applications for the PepsiCo S.M.I.L.E. scholarship closed last month, the application process will open again in 2022. Up to 25 students will earn renewable scholarships of $25,000 each for undergraduate study. Recipients must be currently enrolled and have completed 45 credits. The scholarship funds may be used for any education-related expenses and can be renewed for an additional year. For more information, visit the S.M.I.L.E. Scholarship webpage or Dallas College myScholarships.

To view all PepsiCo scholarship opportunities, please visit the myScholarships “Our Opportunities” webpage (in the search field, key in the word PepsiCo).

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About PepsiCo

PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than 1 billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated more than $70 billion in net revenue in 2020, driven by a complementary food and beverage portfolio that includes Frito-Lay, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Quaker, Tropicana and SodaStream. PepsiCo’s product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including 23 brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales. Guiding PepsiCo is our vision to Be the Global Leader in Convenient Foods and Beverages by Winning With Purpose. “Winning With Purpose” reflects our ambition to win sustainably in the marketplace and embed purpose into all aspects of our business strategy and brands. For more information, visit the PepsiCo website.

About The PepsiCo Foundation

Established in 1962, The PepsiCo Foundation, the philanthropic arm of PepsiCo, invests in the essential elements of a sustainable food system with a mission to support thriving communities. Working with nonprofits and experts around the globe, we’re focused on helping alleviate hunger, managing water and waste responsibly, and supporting women as champions of nutrition from farm to family. We strive for tangible impact in the places where we live and work — collaborating with industry peers, local and international organizations, and our employees to affect large-scale change on the issues that matter to us and are of global importance. Learn more at the PepsiCo Philanthropy​ webpage.