The scholarships were awarded in a festive ceremony attended by the Davis and the Solomon families of Las Vegas, and council mayor Shmuel Rifman. The scholarships range from 2000 NIS for studies towards attaining professional certification, to 3000 NIS for a Master’s degree, and 4000 NIS for a Bachelor’s degree. About 20 students received augmented scholarships for community volunteerism and social action through the Young Adults’ Center. The scholarships total about 708,000 NIS.
Before the ceremony, all recipients attended a half-day seminar to become better acquainted with the region’s community villages, during which they toured the various communities and were exposed to the scope of settlement opportunities offered within the Council’s jurisdiction.
The Davis Ramat HaNegev Fund for Higher Education was founded in 2011. Partners in the Fund are the Ramat HaNegev Regional Council, the Davis family of Las Vegas and the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas. The fund’s purpose is to encourage local citizens to pursue higher education and studies for professional certification, while emphasizing incentives for volunteerism in the community and social action, as well as encouraging students to return to Ramat HaNegev after graduation.
The Scholarship Fund is managed by a public committee in the “Association for the Resident” in Ramat Negev. It determines the criteria as well as the scholarship amount. The committee includes representatives of the public and professional people. At the end of a 3-month process, during which the public committee considered applications in accordance with the criteria published, and even interviewed the scholarship applicants, it approved 197 scholarships out of approximately 260 applications submitted. 53 requests were rejected due to non-compliance with scholarship criteria.
Lawrence and Joan Davis of Las Vegas congratulated the scholarship recipicents and received dozens of handshakes from the many students who wanted to thank them personally.