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News & Press: Society News

Local Heroes: Financial Women of San Francisco Awards Scholarships Amid COVID-19

Tuesday, June 2, 2020  
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Financial Women of San Francisco’s Scholarship Program succeeds despite COVID-19 challenges

The COVID-19 pandemic shelter in place protocols hit the Bay Area just as Financial Women of San Francisco (FWSF) was to interview nearly 90 applicants for its scholarship program. In the last 30 years, FWSF has awarded over $2.5 million in scholarships to over 300 Bay Area women pursuing degrees in finance and related fields, and the depth of its commitment to its mission of advancing women in finance couldn’t be stopped by COVID-19. The organization felt especially driven to ensure scholarships were awarded as the applicant’s stories and needs were more compelling than ever.

When asked about her shelter in place experience, one applicant said:

“The pandemic ended my internship early and my second job of working at the library has been paused due to closures. My father, who has 30+ years seniority working as a garage serviceman was furloughed and filed for unemployment. My mother, who has 20+ years seniority, working at as a cashier had reduced hours and is expecting to be furloughed at the end of May. These financial hardships and future uncertainties caused by the pandemic are heart-breaking, but we, as a family, are managing them by having a positive outlook knowing that we will do our best to help each other during these times.”

FWSF quickly shifted from on-campus, in-person interviews to virtual interviews. The many applicants were whittled to 25 semi-finalists who then participated in panel-style, virtual interviews with no one missing a beat! Ultimately, scholarship awards totaling $150,000 were granted to 11 deserving and inspiring young women. 

The funding for FWSF’s scholarships comes from generous sponsors who are showcased at a fall event attended by over 700 people each year. Although they realized this large gathering was unlikely to occur, FWSF’s sponsors unwaveringly committed to contributing to the scholarships this year. 

On June 5 from 4:00 – 5:15 pm at a virtual celebration event, FWSF will present the awards. Please register to join or consider donating to the FWSF Scholarship Fund at:


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