Black Dirt Scholarship

The Black Dirt Scholarship Fund awards four $1500 scholarships annually, an initiative that has grown over the years in amount and scope. Applicants are evaluated on their character and level of dedication to the service of others through community volunteer service and/or community work experience. The Pine Island Chamber of Commerce sponsors these scholarships, which are funded with a portion of the proceeds from the Chamber’s Black Dirt Feast and Pumpkinfest events.

Applicant must be a resident of the Town of Warwick, New York, and either a high school senior, who will graduate in June, 2024, or a student at any stage of post-secondary education at an accredited educational facility. Applicants must demonstrate a commitment to and involvement in community volunteer service or community work experience. Applicants must be in good academic standing and show evidence of having achieved a minimum grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.5 (or equivalent). Previous applicants may re-apply for consideration, however prior scholarship winners are not eligible.

Amount of Scholarships
Four scholarships of $1,500 each

Submit an essay of not more than 1,000 words, which answers the following request:

“Looking toward the future, describe how you would define a successful individual.”

Provide a personal résumé of community volunteer service, club memberships with positions held, employment history, extracurricular activities, sports, scholastic activities, and awards/honors received. Submit three letters of recommendation from teachers, employers, or other community members not related to you. Include a copy of your transcript from the guidance department or college registrar. All materials requested, including the essay, must be submitted to the applicants high school guidance department with the following exceptions:

Residents attending high schools or colleges outside Warwick must mail application materials directly to the following address: Pine Island Chamber of Commerce, Black Dirt Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 354, Pine Island, NY 10969.

Application Deadline
All materials must be submitted to the students’ high school guidance department by Friday April 5, 2024 or postmarked (if mailed to the above address) no later than Tuesday, April 23, 2024.

Winning applicants agree to receive their awards, as guests of the Chamber, at a Pine Island Chamber of Commerce meeting or event on or before September 1, 2024 where they will be asked to speak briefly about their career plans. In addition they must agree to keep the Pine Island Chamber of Commerce informed about their progress, upon completing their first (or next) semester at the post-secondary educational facility of their choice.

Mission of the Pine Island Chamber of Commerce

The mission of the Pine Island Chamber of Commerce, which was founded in 1961, is to promote prosperity in the business community, support and enhance the uniqueness of the region, and to enrich the lives of all our residents through community spirit and cooperation.