ILA Awards More than $22K in Scholarships
Last week, the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA Local 1408), awarded more than $28,000 in scholarships to 21 area high school seniors and college students during a ceremony at JAXPORT.
Scholarship applicants were required to submit a two to three page essay discussing how increased business from the Jacksonville Harbor Deepening project would positively impact Northeast Florida’s economy.
One of the winners, Katelynd Todd, a Jacksonville native currently attending the University of Florida, plans to use the money to become the first person in her family to graduate college. Her essay states, in part, “If the harbors are deepened, we could potentially increase distribution activity and create lucrative and stable jobs for citizens in need of work. My father has been unemployed most of my life so I understand how an opportunity such as this could completely change things for a family.”
“So many of the things we use come off a ship and that creates local jobs,” Todd said. “As the port gets bigger, it’s great to imagine that my dad could get a job or my fiancé could get a better job contributing to something that impacts our community.”
To be considered for the scholarship, in addition to the essays, students were also required to have a minimum 2.75 GPA and complete community service activities. Students can reapply each year as long as they meet the criteria. Many students are repeat applicants that have received a scholarship all 4 years towards their Bachelor’s degree.
ILA Local 1408 helps connect more than 1,200 longshoremen and dock workers with jobs at JAXPORT. Opportunities for these members continue to grow along with the port.