A free workshop for students and parents, “Life After High School,” will be presented from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday in the auditorium at the Columbus Learning Center, 4555 Central Ave.

Four organizations focusing on issues affecting blacks are presenting the event, according to organizers. They are: the African American Fund, the African American Pastors Alliance, Black Lives Matter of Columbus and the Bartholomew County Area Chapter of the NAACP.

The program originally was presented in May, but organizers felt that they did not reach enough people, said Fred King of the pastors alliance.

“We believe that this program is very important to our African American youth, and to our entire community,” King said. “The workshop had outstanding presenters and was very well done. We feel that it is very important to conduct the workshop again to many more students and parents.”

King said the event grew out of what some leaders see as missed opportunities among young people for college or other forms of job preparation.

“We feel that the workshop is needed to call attention to tremendous financial resources available in Bartholomew County for scholarships to go to college or trade school,” King said. “We are concerned that many members of the African American community (especially) are not sufficiently informed about these opportunities.

“Tapping into these resources involves much more than simply filling out applications. A student must begin preparation as early as middle school in order to start focusing on a career, developing good study habits and taking appropriate courses.”

He added that a representative from the Heritage Fund will be on hand to discuss and demonstrate how to go online and apply for scholarships on their website. More than $400,000 in scholarships were awarded to students in Bartholomew County this year, according to organizers.

A representative from the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation will address the importance of achieving and maintaining a solid grade-point average to qualify for scholarships, and to be assured of acceptance into vocational programs and related training.

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Brian Blair is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at bblair@therepublic.com or 812-379-5672.