This unique scholarship was established in 2011 by Dr. Massoud Eghrari and his wife, Tayebeh, to honor Dr. Eghrari’s late wife, Isabella. Students apply for the scholarship with an essay describing what they would do with the $500 prize.
But there’s a catch. Due to their belief that all experiences have the potential to be educational, Dr. and Mrs. Eghrari require that all funds be used for something fun—and outside the scope of the pursuit of education. The purpose of the Isabella Eghrari Memorial Scholarship is based on the understanding that students may find it difficult or uncomfortable to pay for some of the simple pleasures of college life.
Isabella Eghrari felt strongly that the college experience includes socializing with other students and exploring new experiences. She recognized how stressful the first year of college can be and wanted to provide an opportunity for fun and relaxation.
This year’s recipients plan on spending their “fun money” on new hairstyles, theme park tickets, shopping sprees, boating, brand-name fragrances, car parts, high-end electronics, home décor and more.
The scholarship presentation event allows Dr. Eghrari to meet face-to-face with the scholarship recipients and gain first-hand insight into the students’ personal and professional goals before graciously sharing some appropriate life lessons of his own.
“Dr. Eghrari is one of the most caring and giving people I’ve had the honor of meeting,” stated Florida SouthWestern State College Freshman Alex Martinez. “He talked about the importance of kindness and generosity—paying it forward to those in need when you are in a position to do so. I am determined to have a future that allows me to pay it forward, too. Without a helping hand from people like Dr. Eghrari and family, we would not be able to have these amazing life experiences.”
Though The Immokalee Foundation’s programs benefit elementary, middle and high school students, the heavy lifting continues beyond the high school commencement ceremony. “Our robust postsecondary program supports our students until they graduate and accept their first professional position,” said Noemi Y. Perez, President and CEO of The Immokalee Foundation. “We’re so grateful to Dr. and Mrs. Eghrari for so thoughtfully understanding the unique problems associated with the transition from the familiarity of high school to the challenges of postsecondary education. Their ongoing support of The Immokalee Foundation’s postsecondary students has been a gift to so many deserving young people.”
About The Immokalee Foundation: For more than 31 years, The Immokalee Foundation has been preparing the next generation of leaders through a 100% focus on education, career readiness, and professional development for students in Immokalee. The Foundation provides new pathways to success and financial independence through robust programming that prepares students for well-paying, in-demand professional careers in Business Management & Entrepreneurship, Education & Human Services, Engineering & Construction Management and Healthcare. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, become a mentor, signature events, volunteer as a career panel speaker or host, donate, or include the Foundation in your estate plans, please call 239-430-9122 or visit immokaleefoundation.org