The Pussycat Foundation recently granted the Ithaca College BOLD Women’s Leadership Network $1.2 million to continue the program.
College President Shirley M. Collado announced Jan. 28 at the All-College Gathering in the Emerson Suites that the BOLD scholarship program received a $1.2 million grant from the Pussycat Foundation, a nonprofit foundation that honors Helen Gurley Brown, former editor-in-chief for Cosmopolitan Magazine. Collado created the BOLD program when she worked at Rutgers University–Newark, and she brought it to Ithaca College in 2017. The program provides cohorts of approximately seven female-identifying students with two-year scholarships worth up to approximately $27,500 per year.
Collado said that during her time at the college, the BOLD program has received a total of $3.6 million.
She said she is thankful for everyone who has helped support the BOLD program, including Rosanna Ferro, vice president of student affairs and campus life, and BOLD Program Director Samantha Elebiary.
Elebiary said she is excited about the grant because it will fund two more cohorts of BOLD scholars. There have already been three cohorts of BOLD scholars. Elebiary said a focus of the program is to benefit women at the college, not just the BOLD scholars.
“A big part of that is for the scholars while they’re in the program is to work with other women on campus and to leverage their own experiences and try to share that with other women,” Elebiary said. “By getting them to participate in events, workshops, trainings, they get the chance to do a transformational project during their time in the program.”
She said the first cohort of BOLD scholars created Engaging Mental Health in People of Color (EMPOC) as its transformational project. Elebiary said the second cohort of BOLD scholars created a mentorship program that connects students at the college with students at the New Roots Charter School.
Elebiary said the program is currently taking applications and recommendations for the fourth cohort of BOLD scholars.