Sunday, March 10, 2019 at 12:00 AM CST
Saturday, April 13, 2019 at 11:55 PM CDT

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This is an online event. 
 After completing registrtion, please send all documents to dcnaacp.sydfinley@gmail.com.



Debra Jordan 
DuPage County NAACP


DuPage County NAACP Sydney Finley Memorial Scholarship 2019 

Thank you for your interest in registering for the 2019 Sydney Finley Memorial Scholarship. This essay competition is open to high school seniors who reside in DuPage, Kane, Kendall and Will counties. Please complete this form to register today! Your application is not complete until we receive all the requested documents in the check list via email.

Sydney Finley Memorial Scholarship – Essay Submission Dates

Registration Opens:  Sunday, March 10, 2019
Registration Closes:  Saturday, April 13, 2019 11:55 p.m.

Winners will be notified via email and will be our guests at the 2019 DuPage County NAACP Freedom Fund Gala on April 28, 2019. Parents and supporters can access 2019 Dupage County NAACP Freedom Fund Gala and ticket purchase information at: http://dupagecountynaacp.org/events/gala/ 

Eligibility Requirements

  • High School seniors in good academic standing with a minimum overall GPA of 2.50
  • DuPage County NAACP Youth Membership for applicant and one parent by Saturday, March 30, 2019, 11:55 p.m.
Join online: http://dupagecountynaacp.org/membership/
  • DuPage County NAACP Youth Member ($10) 
  • DuPage County NAACP Adult Member ($30)

Required Documentation

All of the following supporting documentation must be received by the DuPage County NAACP Sydney Finley Scholarship Committee by 11:55 p.m. on Saturday, April 13, 2019.

  1.  A current headshot picture (to appear in the DuPage County NAACP 2019 Freedom Fund Gala Program Book)
  2. Official sealed copy of high school transcript emailed from your school to dcnaacp.sydfinley@gmail.com or mailed to PO Box 475, Wheaton, IL 60189
  3. Proof of application and/or acceptance to an institution of higher education
  4. Copy of NAACP membership card or email confirmation of membership payment from NAACP
  5. Two (2) letters of reference supporting your commitment to academic success and community service 
    • One reference from an educator or counselor from your high school who can support your academic excellence and extracurricular activities
    • One reference letter from one of the following: 
      • Leader of a community organization where you provide community service (church, youth organization, non-profit organization, etc.)
      • An employer at a company that you provide a service for (paid position, unpaid internship, etc.)

Make your submission by one of the following methods:

  • Email:  Must be received by 11:55 p.m. on Saturday, April 13, 2019


  • Postal Delivery:   Must be postmarked by Saturday, April 13, 2019

Mail to:

DuPage County NAACP

Syd Finley Scholarship Committee

P.O. Box 475

 Wheaton, IL 60189

Essay Requirements

Please write an essay in response to the essay question below.  Online submissions must be single-spaced.  Hard-copy submissions must be double-spaced.  Place ticket number (emailed to you when you register for the scholarship) in the upper left-hand corner of your essay.  DO NOT INCLUDE YOUR NAME ON THE ESSAY.

Essay Question

The theme of the 2019 DuPage County NAACP Freedom Fund Gala is “Building Bridges”.

There are countless definitions of a bridge, depending upon the context and situation associated with its application. Many times we must “bridge a gap” in our relationships, our careers, and our pursuit of excellence.  Simply applied, a bridge provides a connection, transition, or route between two or more people, groups, activities, conditions or the like, resulting in the closing of a gap, or overcoming an obstacle or barrier.   

Write a 500-750 word essay, answering the following question: 

As a high school student, how have you overcome an obstacle, challenging situation, or barrier that has created a personal bridge between your high school career and the start of your college career?

 Tips for writing a successful essay

  • Takes the audience into account
  • Has a clear introduction
  • States a focus/position statement clearly, precisely, and thoughtfully
  • Uses specific evidence from the text(s) to support and develop the position and explains that evidence logically
  • Takes into account what people who disagree with you might think and tries to respond to that
  • Concludes effectively
  • Uses precise language
  • Shows control over conventions

Winners will be notified via email and will be our guests at the 2019 DuPage County NAACP Freedom Fund Gala on April 28, 2019

Parents and supporters can access 2019 Dupage County NAACP Freedom Fund Gala information and purchase tickets online.

Click here for tickets