OCC Student Tala Alahmar Awarded Prestigious Community College Transfer Scholarship

Highly Competitive Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship Worth up to $40,000 to Help Complete Her Bachelor’s Degree

Tala Alahmar of Rochester Hills, a student at Oakland Community College, is one of 72 recipients of the national Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s prestigious Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. The highly selective national scholarship provides Alahmar with up to $40,000 a year to complete her bachelor’s degree.

Tala Alahmar wins the prestigious national Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship.

The Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship is a highly selective scholarship for the nation’s top community college students seeking to complete their bachelor’s degrees at a four-year college or university. Alahmar was among more than 1,300 students from 398 community colleges who applied for the 2021 Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. The Foundation evaluated each submission based on students’ academic ability and achievement, financial need, persistence, leadership, and service to others.

“Tala is an incredibly gifted and dedicated student and one of the most active and outstanding student leaders at OCC,” said Chancellor Peter Provenzano, Jr. “She is truly an OCC shining star and she will continue to do amazing things in the future.”

Alahmar, originally from Syria, graduated from OCC this spring with an associate in Arts degree. She plans to transfer to the University of Michigan to study International Relations and work toward her goal to become an ambassador for the United Nations.

In addition to her studies, Alahmar held numerous leadership positions for the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Honor Society while at OCC, and was recently elected to serve a one-year term as the 2021 PTK international president. The role is the highest position of student leadership within the organization which boasts more than 3.5 million members in the United States and 10 sovereign nations. She is the first person from Michigan to be elected in this position. 

She was also elected president of the Michigan Region for PTK and has volunteered as a field organizer for the Michigan Democratic Party. Her speech about evolving from an introvert to someone who proudly uses her voice to share the value of diversity, equity, and inclusion, earned a spot as one of four national finalists in the 2020 PTK Virtual Speech Competition.

Each Cooke Scholar has access to generous financial support for two to three years, college planning support, ongoing advising, and the opportunity to connect with the thriving community of fellow scholars. To date, over 1,000 students from all over the country have received the Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship.

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About the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Since 2000, the Foundation has awarded over $222 million in scholarships to over 2,800 students from 8th grade through graduate school, along with comprehensive educational advising and other support services. The Foundation has also provided $115 million in grants to organizations that serve such students. Visit www.jkcf.org

About OCC

Offering nearly 100 degrees and certificates, OCC is Michigan’s largest multi-campus community college and No. 1 transfer institution in the state. The College provides academic, career training and enriching experiences, designed to empower students to reach their potential and enhance our community. More than 1 million students have enrolled in the College since it opened in 1965. A seven-person Board of Trustees governs OCC. Board members are elected on a non-partisan, at-large basis, serve as volunteers and are not paid. Mission statement: OCC is committed to empowering our students to succeed and advancing our community. Learn more at oaklandcc.edu.

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