Isla Mujeres Scholarship Program

What it is:

High School is not free in Mexico. The cost is approximately $50 per month and on an island where the average daily wage is $8, this can be a huge strain for some families.
We have matched up people who travel frequently to the island of Isla Mujeres, Mexico, (Islaholics) with students on the island to provide financial assistance for high school and college expenses. Many of our students not only excel, but have gone further with their education than they ever dreamed possible.
As sponsors, we are proud to help such deserving students and watch them succeed. The relationships that are formed between the sponsor family and the student family result an enhanced cultural understanding and a rewarding friendship.

From Maggie of La Gloria English School:

“Gabriela, David and Felipe are three high school students on Isla Mujeres who have been recipients of scholarship funds.  They are all graduating in June and are looking forward to next year.  They all want to go to college in Valladolid – about 2 hrs from Cancun in the Yucatan.  Gaby wants to go into “Education Science”, Felipe would like to study Communication Arts and David would like to study Tourism Administration (business Admin?).   All 3 seem motivated and are extremely hopeful that they will be able to continue their studies.

Here is what they need:
On Wednesday – they will need to pay the initial registration of $1200 pesos ($100) each to get themselves enrolled.  They are hoping they will get help with this, but I have told them to assume they will have to find the money themselves.  I said I would ask you for it, but not to count on it.

When classes start in August, it will cost them about $200 USD per month for registrations, tuition (they are separate here!) and living quarters.  On top of that will be all the living expenses including food, which they think their parents, can, help them with.”

I co-sponsor Alejandra who is going to university in Merida. I met her and her family last month while I was on Isla Mujeres.

One interesting thing that I learned about most Mexican university programs like the one that Alejandra is attending is that it is a strict 4 year program. There is no stopping in the middle of it. If a student drops then later wants to complete the program they must start from the beginning. This is very different from the USA college system where many students take much longer than 4 years to complete their  studies to receive a degree.

2 Responses

  1. When we were on Isla last month, we had dinner with gaby & her family & Jo & Tim & Maggie and Tom—one major topic of discussion was helping Gaby go to college. The 4 of us are committed to helping her, but will need to add a few more people to our team to cover expenses. How many are on your team?

    • For the longest time there were only three on Alejandra’s team. I donated 1/2 and the other two picked up the rest. Now that Wanda has rejoined the team we have four which works out better. I also am no longer centrally collecting the money and sending in one check.

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