The following is a company-submitted press release and does not necessarily represent the views or opinions of College Planning & Management magazine.

Big Red Soda Launches Second Annual ¡Avance! Scholarship Program to Encourage Pursuit of Higher Education Within Hispanic Community

AUSTIN, TX – To celebrate Hispanic Heritage month, Big Red, America’s original and best-selling red soda, has partnered with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) to launch a scholarship program for students interested in pursuing a higher education. For the second year, Big Red will award five students with scholarships through the Big Red ¡Avance! Scholarship Program. 

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanic college enrollment has doubled in the last 20 years. However, the cost of a higher education continues to rise, significantly outpacing inflation, and can be a deterrent to any potential applicant.

The scholarships, awarded for the 2018-2019 academic year, will grant $1,000 each to five students that attend a HACU member institution. Students can learn more about the program at www.bigred.com/scholarship and can sign up to be notified when the applications go live in January 2018. Last year’s program received over 1,800 applications from around the country.

“Big Red is proud to support HACU’s mission of championing Hispanic success in higher education,” says Sergio Trujillo, marketing director at Big Red. “Last year, we saw great interest in our Big Red ¡Avance! Scholarship Program and we hope to generate the same level of enthusiasm in our second year so we can continue to make higher education a reality for some of today’s promising young leaders.”

Last year’s award recipients commented:  

“As a first-generation college student from a socioeconomically disadvantaged background, I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to receive a higher education, says Olivia Mello, a student at Chapman University. “I would never be able to realize this ambition without Big Red’s support. My future aspiration to become a lawyer was made possible because of such generosity.”

Lauren Negrete, who attends Arizona State University, adds: “The Big Red! Avance! Scholarship has helped me, as a first-generation college student, finish my final year and graduate with a Bachelors of Arts. I am working to graduate with little to no debt, and as someone who comes from a single-parent home this program has made that possible.”

Continues Alexandra Cabanelas-Bermudez who attends Nova Southeastern University: “This scholarship helped me pay for my senior year of undergraduate studies. It not only helped me financially but it made me feel part of the community. The Big Red family believes in what I can achieve as a Hispanic college student and that feels amazing.”

Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated every year from September 15–October 15 to recognize the contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans to the U.S. To reach students, Big Red will utilize in-store point of sale elements, social media, a microsite and public relations. 

ABOUT BIG RED
Big Red Inc. is one of the top 10 beverage companies in North America with a history dating back to 1937. Along with Big Red®, recognized as the number-one selling red soda, Big Red Inc. also markets beverage brands Big Red Zero®, Big Blue®, Big Peach®, Big Pineapple®, NuGrape®, and Nesbitt’s® products. Distributed widely throughout the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Independent Bottlers and Pepsi Beverages Company, consumers across the country enjoy Big Red Inc.’s beverages.  For more information, please visit www.bigred.com.

ABOUT HACU
The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) represent approximately 470 colleges and universities committed to Hispanic higher education success in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Latin America and Spain. The association’s headquarters are located in San Antonio, TX, with offices in Washington, DC, and Sacramento, CA. HACU is the only national association representing existing and emerging Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). Information is available at www.hacu.net.

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