We’re celebrating! Almost a year ahead of schedule, we and our LEAP Tampa Bay partners have successfully met a challenge from the Helios Education Foundation. We raised $500,000 and Helios is contributing $1 million to bring the Fuse Scholarship Fund to $3 million. This is a major milestone in our collaborative work to help more local residents, especially first-generation, minority and under-represented students, earn a degree.

FUSE is a seamless transfer program between the University of South Florida and eight Florida state colleges, including Hillsborough Community College and St. Petersburg College. It offers a timely graduation pathway for the completion of an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree. The scholarship of up to $5,500 helps Fuse students fill the gap for expenses not covered by financial aid and gets them to their degrees faster.

Thanks to all the donors and partners who made this possible, including the USAmeribank Foundation, which made the initial gift of $500,000 in 2017 to start the fund. And, of course, the Helios Education Foundation, which now has contributed $2 million to the effort.