The Taco Bell Foundation has successfully reached its commitment to award $21 million in Live Más Scholarships by 2021
Irvine, Calif. (May 18, 2021) - The Taco Bell Foundation announced today that it is awarding a total of $17 million in funds to break down barriers to educate and inspire the next generation of leaders. This year, $7 million in Live Más Scholarships is being distributed to 725 scholarship winners out of nearly 10,000 applicants. On June 1, an additional $10 million in grants will be disbursed to nearly 400 local youth-serving organizations across the country as part of the Taco Bell Foundation’s “Day of Giving.”
This year’s scholarship recipients include 270 fans of the brand, 150 Taco Bell® Restaurant team members, and 305 renewal winners (those who have won Live Más Scholarships in the past and applied for a renewal). Scholarship awards range from $5,000-$25,000 per student. Of the $7 million in Live Más Scholarships, $2 million will be awarded to Taco Bell team members.
“After a tough year of remote learning, we hope these scholarships help inspire young people around the country to continue pursuing their boldest ambitions,” said Jennifer Bradbury, Executive Director of the Taco Bell Foundation. “We are so excited to have met the commitment we set for ourselves to award $21 million in scholarships by 2021 in just six years and look forward to supporting students on their educational journeys in even more innovative ways in the future.”
This scholarship is no ordinary one; winners join a community whose support goes far beyond just funds. In its sixth year since the scholarship began, this year's winners join more than 1,000 prior Live Más Scholars. New and old scholars will come together for a virtual conference this summer to network and develop personal and professional skills. This “Summer of Connection” will feature topics including early career success, navigating change, money – how to earn and what to do with it, self-advocacy, networking and much more.
To raise money for the scholarship fund, the Taco Bell Foundation partners with Taco Bell restaurants to host National Fundraisers twice a year. This year, fundraising has already begun in participating restaurants. Through July 1, customers will be asked to “round up” their order to the nearest dollar at checkout, whether ordering at the drive-thru, a kiosk or the front counter, with the ambitious goal of raising $7 million in six weeks. Fans can also support by purchasing hats, t-shirts, pencils and notebooks from Taco Bell Foundation Collection merch on the Taco Shop—all proceeds will go towards scholarships, grants and programming.
Funding helps empower Live Más Scholars to pursue a variety of different passions, from computer science to music. Here are a few of this year’s outstanding scholars:
- Nash Consing: Nash is a renewal scholarship winner who has received a total of $10K from the Taco Bell Foundation to pursue his passion of filmmaking. He has earned national recognition for To My Future Employer, a personal documentary about the impact of COVID-19 on job prospects for recent graduates. Nash was even featured on Taco Bell CEO Mark King’s podcast, where he was surprised with a grant from Taco Bell to pursue his next film project.
- Jasmin Lopez: Jasmin is a first-generation college student who won a $25K Live Más Scholarship to study chemical engineering. Jasmin has led design teams at the Georgia Institute of Technology to create innovative ways to address environmental issues in her community, including a trash-collecting arcade machine and smart composting bins. She aspires to be an urban farmer to combat the environmental disparities faced by communities of color.
- Kaylhan Garcia: A service champion at Taco Bell and daughter of immigrants, Kaylhan was awarded a $25K scholarship to continue pursuing her passion of community service. She started her own non-profit called Dreamers Thrive, intended to increase and mobilize civic engagement among minority groups through education and volunteerism. In her free time, Kaylhan mentors middle and high school students. She aspires to attend American University and eventually law school.
About Taco Bell Foundation
Taco Bell Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) public charity that helps break down barriers to educate and inspire the next generation of America’s young leaders. Since 1992, the Taco Bell Foundation has reached more than 4 million young people across the country and has awarded more than $110 million in grants and scholarships, focused on education and career readiness.
For more information about the Taco Bell Foundation, visit www.tacobellfoundation.org.