Flashes Go Further to Complete Degrees with Kent State Scholarships

Successful program tops $50 million in aid supporting more than 10K students in need

For Kent State University alumna Yalanda (Cunningham) Johnson, it was an honor and a blessing to receive the Flashes Go Further Scholarship.

As a first-generation, non-traditional student, Johnson used the funds to help complete her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2022. In all, it took her a total of 10 years to complete her degree.

“If you can get that little bit of help it encourages people to move forward,” Johnson said. “It encourages people to get into college or go back to college.”

The Flashes Go Further Scholarship Program helped Yalanda (Cunningham) Johnson complete her degree.

Cunningham is one of more than 11,000 Kent State students awarded nearly $50 million in Flashes Go Further Scholarships since its inception in 2021.

Kent State University President Todd Diacon announced the Flashes Go Further Scholarship on June 21, 2021, as a first-of-its-kind new student aid program that focuses on moving even more Kent State Golden Flashes to graduation, and beyond. The program means eligible students will graduate free of debt for tuition, general fees and books.

“This program is a testament to our deep commitment to access and completion for all,” President Todd Diacon noted. “We are consistently recognized nationally for our success in graduating more students. Our graduation rate is already the highest in northern Ohio and the third highest in the state, but we won’t rest until all students we enroll graduate and succeed in their first jobs after college or enroll in our graduate programs.”

Criteria for the Flashes Go Further Scholarship Program changed significantly in anticipation of the new FAFSA, which no longer provides an Expected Family Contribution. 

Students/families with a total income of up to $75,000 as determined and reported on the FAFSA can be assessed for the last dollar scholarship award, and students/families with a total income between $75,001 and $100,000 may qualify for an award of up to $2,000 for the year. 

Additionally, Flashes Go Further no longer provides a last-semester graduation award, and there is no longer a Flashes Go Further award specific to graduate students. Only undergraduates from Ohio, who have completed a FAFSA, can be considered for the scholarship.

The Flashes Go Further Scholarship helped alumna Latisha Culler complete her bachelor’s degree in Integrative Studies in 2022. At the time she was unsure how she would complete her degree because she did not have the means to repay large student loan amounts.

“Without the Flashes Go Further Scholarship I don’t know how I would have finished,” Culler said. “I would have finished at some point, but it would have taken longer. I’m really grateful for the scholarship.”

Find more information about the Flashes Go Further Scholarship Program.


POSTED: Monday, May 6, 2024 04:18 PM
Updated: Friday, May 17, 2024 10:36 AM
April McClellan-Copeland