Each year, the Students Pursuing Academic Rewards, Knowledge, Love and Employment Fund, also known as “The SPARKLE Fund,” provides grants to college students who personify the fund’s name.

The SPARKLE Fund rewards deserving young scholars in a unique way, as their grants are not intended for educational expenses such as tuition and books.

Instead, each SPARKLE Fund grant is intended to help students with life’s “extra” expenses, such as clothing, entertainment, gas, family and even helping others.

This year, the KMC’s own RioShaune’ Harris was chosen as a SPARKLE Fund recipient. She is one of only five youth nominated by the Boys & Girls Club of America president this year and one of only 60 individuals to ever receive this honor from the SPARKLE Fund.

As a SPARKLE Fund recipient, RioShaune’ will receive approximately $3,000 this year, paid on a monthly basis. In return, RioShaune’ must remain in college, do her best to succeed and write a one-page letter on a monthly basis detailing how she is progressing in school.

RioShaune’, daughter of Master Sgt. Shaun and Tatineesha Harris, has been very active in the 86th Force Support Squadron’s Vogelweh Youth Programs.

Her commitment to the Keystone Club and Boys & Girls Club was recently recognized when RioShaune’ was named the Boys & Girls Club of America 2011 Youth of the Year, Europe. This honor led to RioShaune’s nomination for the SPARKLE Fund grant.

RioShaune’ is currently in her first year at Baylor University in Texas. She is an ROTC cadet and engineering student who is also active in her community.
In fact, RioShaune’ was recently asked to attend a special event during the National Keystone Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, at which she will speak as the teen ambassador for youth-focused military clubs.

For more information about Youth Programs, the Boys & Girls Club, Keystone Club and the SPARKLE Fund, call Youth Programs at 489-6504 or 0631-536-6504.

(Courtesy of the 86th Force Support Squadron)