BENEFITS FOR YOU
Member Career Grants
How CSEA’s Member Career Grants can help spark a new career pathway
When you are a classified professional supporting the education of others, prioritizing your own educational goals can sometimes take a backseat.
Each year CSEA commits to supporting members who are pursuing a degree with over $135,000 in scholarships and grants, including $1,000 member career grants to help lessen the burden of higher education.
“The challenge I faced with continuing my education while working full-time was not being able to take the necessary core classes during my work hours,” said Cindy Ordaz, who serves as president of Santa Monica College Chapter 36 and works as an administrative assistant. “Now that more classes are offered online, I have a better chance of balancing my work, home and school life.”
Ordaz is one of 45 CSEA members who received a $1,000 member career grant in 2022.
Cindy Ordaz, Santa Monica Chapter 36, is studying computer programming and graphic design at Santa Monica College.
“The price of a laptop is unaffordable, and this grant would make it possible for me to purchase the most important tool I need to continue my education.”
- Cindy Ordaz, Santa Monica Chapter 36
“I have managed to save every year for school supplies, car maintenance, medical emergencies, but it has become increasingly challenging to save for anything other than monthly or annual expenses that are absolutely necessary,” Ordaz explained. “The price of a laptop is unaffordable, and this grant would make it possible for me to purchase the most important tool I need to continue my education.”
Overcoming life’s challenges to pursue educational goals are just another reason why CSEA’s scholarships and grants are a powerful resource for members across the Association.
Whether pursuing a life-long dream or returning to school after a life of serving others, if your career path starts at an institution of higher learning, CSEA’s Member Career Grants are here to help.
“My mother was a well-known doctor who always gave back to the community of Redondo Beach,” said Therran Robinson of Redondo Beach Chapter 57, who was awarded a $1,000 grant. He works as an instructional behavior interventionist.
“I would like to continue my mother's legacy by completing my educational and career goals.”
- Therran Robinson, Redondo Beach Chapter 57
Therran Robinson, Redondo Beach Chapter 57, is studying child development and respiratory therapy at El Camino College
“With me being the youngest and my middle brother being on the autism spectrum, my passion for early childhood education grew. I would like to continue my mother's legacy by completing my educational and career goals.”
Becoming a credential teacher has been a lifelong dream for Lorenzo Warfel of San Jacinto Chapter 189.
Throughout his career as a classified employee, he has seen a growing need for bilingual educators, which inspired him to pursue earning his teaching credential in education.
“I currently work as a substitute literacy aide for Hemet Unified while also working for San Jacinto Unified as a special education instructional aide,” said Warfel, who also serves as his chapter’s site representative. “Eventually, I plan to become a resource teacher in English for ESL students as I am bilingual. I can’t wait to be in the classroom as a credentialed teacher.”
Lorenzo Warfel of San Jacinto Chapter 189 is pursuing a degree in education at National University
“It’s because of CSEA and the children I work with that I’ve been inspired to pursue my degree in teaching. Thank you CSEA!”
- Lorenzo Warfel of San Jacinto Chapter 189
Like his CSEA siblings who were awarded a member career grant, Warfel was able to offset the cost of college with the support of his union.
“I feel a profound sense of appreciation to CSEA for providing me with this grant,” said Warfel. “It’s because of CSEA and the children I work with that I’ve been inspired to pursue my degree in teaching. Thank you CSEA!”
Applications for CSEA’s member career grants open June 1 and must be returned complete with requested information no later than October 31. Applicants are awarded exclusively by the Scholarship Committee based on a combination of criteria, including:
· Financial need
· Career goals and objectives
· Leadership, character, and community service
· Participation in CSEA activities For more information, links to the application and the required Chapter Participation Form, visit www.csea.com/education. Members may also want to apply for the Union Plus Scholarship and for a Member Reimbursement Subsidy Grant of up to $250.