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CUNY and Ponce Bank Partner to Launch Annual Scholarships for Minority Students

Eligible Students from 12 CUNY Campuses Can Receive Funding for Their Undergraduate Studies

The City University of New York is partnering with Ponce Bank, the community banking institution founded in 1960 with branches located throughout New York City on a major scholarship program to enable CUNY students to lay the groundwork for successful careers.

Undergraduate students who live in economically disadvantaged communities, identify as members of a minority group and attend any of 12 CUNY senior and community colleges in four boroughs are eligible to apply. The scholarship program will begin in Fall 2022, and funds will total $60,000 annually with individual awards of between $1,000 and $2,500 per student.

“This generous scholarship funding from Ponce Bank will make it easier for a great number of New Yorkers to pursue their undergraduate studies at CUNY, supporting our University’s mission to elevate our students and, ultimately, the many diverse communities of New York City,” said Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez. “We look forward to working with Ponce Bank in distributing these scholarship funds to help students complete the degrees they need to pursue fulfilling and lucrative careers in their chosen fields. We thank Ponce Bank for helping to make a real difference in the lives of our students and our city.”

“Ponce Bank is uniquely proud to spearhead this significant scholarship program, and we are excited to be doing so in tandem with the City University of New York,” said Carlos P. Naudon, president and CEO of Ponce Bank. “With deep roots in the communities we serve, we at Ponce Bank feel that education is the lifeblood of a thriving, forward-moving population. By providing funds for undergraduates, we are making major strides in helping students to realize their dreams and become productive, important members of the community at large. There is no greater cause than education, and we are thrilled to champion this important scholarship program.”

Eligible students at the 12 colleges must reside in a low- to moderate-income community (LMI) and identify as a member of a minority group. The colleges are: Hostos Community College, Lehman College, Bronx Community College, Medgar Evers College, Kingsborough Community College, Brooklyn College, Guttman Community College, Borough of Manhattan Community College, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, York College, LaGuardia Community College and Queensborough Community College. Applicants must submit a short essay explaining what makes them ideal candidates for this award.

The City University of New York is the nation’s largest urban public university, a transformative engine of social mobility that is a critical component of the lifeblood of New York City. Founded in 1847 as the nation’s first free public institution of higher education, CUNY today has seven community colleges, 11 senior colleges and seven graduate or professional institutions spread across New York City’s five boroughs, serving over 260,000 undergraduate and graduate students and awarding 55,000 degrees each year. CUNY’s mix of quality and affordability propels almost six times as many low-income students into the middle class and beyond as all the Ivy League colleges combined. More than 80 percent of the University’s graduates stay in New York, contributing to all aspects of the city’s economic, civic and cultural life and diversifying the city’s workforce in every sector. CUNY’s graduates and faculty have received many prestigious honors, including 13 Nobel Prizes and 26 MacArthur “Genius” Grants. The University’s historic mission continues to this day: provide a first-rate public education to all students, regardless of means or background.

Ponce Bank was born in the Bronx 62 years ago and currently has branches in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Union City, New Jersey. It is a subsidiary of Ponce Financial Group, a NASDAQ-traded company under the symbol PDLB.  Ponce Bank is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), a Minority Depository Institution (MDI), and a Certified SBA Lender. At Ponce Bank, we are proud to serve our neighbors as the COVID-19 pandemic affects the communities we serve more directly than many others. We were there in 1960; we are here for you today.