LAWRENCE — The Office of Multicultural Affairs at the University of Kansas will recognize the recipients of the Christopher House Scholarship at a recognition ceremony from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15, at the Sabatini Multicultural Resource Center. Thirteen African-American seniors have been awarded the annual scholarship that assists African-American students who may be struggling financially during their final year at KU.
Originally established in 1993, the House Scholarship was made available through the generous donation of Christopher Columbus House. According to House, “funds shall be used to provide scholarships for deserving senior students, including students in their fifth year of school pursuing a degree which requires five years to complete, of African-American heritage at the University of Kansas who exhibit exceptional merit and financial need."
House was born in 1905 in Mississippi and graduated from KU in 1940 with a bachelor’s degree. While at KU he was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and upon graduation wished to give back to the future students of KU. House held several accounting positions following graduation and eventually became a high school teacher in the Washington, D.C., public schools. He died in 1994 at the age of 89.
“The Office of Multicultural affairs is extremely grateful to Christopher House and his family for this their generous contributions over the years,” said Blane Harding, director of OMA. “Without their support graduation may not have been a possibility for these students. It is extremely gratifying for OMA to be able to re-establish this annual award.”
The Christopher House Scholarship was first awarded in 1993, when a fund was established by House and a contribution by his sister. This year is the first time since 2003 the scholarship has been awarded. The scholarship was discovered in the spring of 2012 by Reuben Perez, then serving as interim director of OMA, and Precious Porras, assistant director.
In the future, OMA will send notice and application procedures to all senior African American students during the fall semester, encouraging them to apply. The selection committee consists of staff members of the OMA who review all applications and make choices based on academic achievement