Howard Students Hit By Financial Aid Scandal Get Help From Scholarship Search Service

Written by Ann Brown


Scholarship Search Service
Tyrone Hankerson Jr.

Howard University, one of the country’s most revered historically black colleges and universities,  has been rocked by a financial aid scandal and its estimated 10,000 students are reeling from the impropriety.

Students have been occupying the Washington, D.C. university’s administration building since March 29 to protest the misappropriated financial aid funds of more $1 million.

Now scholarship search service Scholly has announced it has created a fund specifically for Howard University students affected by the misappropriation of financial aid funds that occurred from  2007 to 2016. The Howard Fund is a one-time initiative and will be separate from the company’s scholarship matching service.

“An outside auditor found last year that university employees misappropriated financial aid funding over the course of nine years. Some university employees were receiving grants from the school to attend classes, while also receiving tuition remission, the investigation found, earning more money than their education cost and pocketing the difference,” reported CNN.

Howard has confirmed that six employees were fired for “gross misconduct and neglect” related to misappropriation of financial aid money.

Due to this, many Howard students were left wondering how they would pay for their classes.

According to Scholly founder Chris Gray, this issue “just hit home for us as a company that helps people pay for college…We’re going to award up to $10,000 to the students.”

He continued: “The first round, we’re collecting information about students who were affected, (and) then we’re going to follow up to verify the situation.”

Scholly says it will take steps to ensure that any funds disbursed will go to the students they want to help. “Application vetting will include connecting with the University’s financial aid office to ensure that those who are applying to receive money from Scholly’s Howard Fund were adversely affected by the misappropriation of university aid money,” reported WTOP.

Scholly tweeted, “In the wake of the incident that occurred at @HowardU #Scholly has opened a scholarship fund awarding the students affected up to $10,000″ using the hashtag #SchollyforHoward.

“To be clear, Scholly is not trying to vilify Howard. We are open to working with the university to identify the students affected and to make sure we help as many students as possible,” founder and CEO Christopher Gray told Black Enterprise.

Scholly will also accept applications from Howard students who were forced to drop out as a direct result of this scandal.

Anyone who applies must have a Howard University email address.

“Scholly received the nation’s attention when it was featured on ‘Shark Tank,’ landing a deal with Daymond John and Lori Greiner while sparking the biggest fight in ‘Shark Tank’ history. Shortly thereafter, Scholly grew to be the No. 1 overall app in both the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store for over three weeks,” Black Enterprise reported.

Since its launch, Scholly has helped find more than $70 million in scholarship money for students.

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