The Greater Worcester Community Foundation (GWCF) recently awarded over $700,000 in college scholarships to local students for the 2020-21 academic year - the highest annual scholarship amount in the history of the Foundation. Over 400 students received scholarships averaging $1,600 to assist them in beginning or continuing their college education.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to put a strain on family finances, this year's scholarships are especially critical for expanding access to higher education,” said GWCF President and CEO Barbara Fields. “Students and higher educational institutions alike are facing so much uncertainty, we're proud to continue our commitment to ease the burden for the awardees and their families.”

Since the scholarship program began in 1978, the Foundation has awarded more than $12 million to over 8,000 students through 136 scholarship funds. This year, more than 150 volunteers reviewed and selected students through a highly competitive process based on merit, financial need, and criteria established by Foundation donors.

“Our scholarship program is a direct investment in our community's future,” said GWCF Board Chair Carolyn Stempler. “We are grateful that so many generous donors have made the attainment of higher education for Worcester County students a priority.”

This year's awardees come from over 50 cities and towns across Worcester County; nearly 35% from the City of Worcester. The next application cycle will open in January 2021.

For more information, please contact Liz Nye, Donor Services Officer at