Financial Opportunities for Minority Americans
Updated on Jan 15 2019
There are financial opportunities for minority Americans that slip through the cracks each year. From grants for minority-owned businesses to help with every day living expenses or educational opportunities, don’t miss out on these great minority benefits.
On August 28, 1963 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C:
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
In honor of Dr. King’s legacy and quest for equality, we are sharing financial opportunities specifically for minority Americans. Learn more about financial opportunities and “free money” for minorities in America.
Grants for Minority-Owned Businesses
Minority-owned businesses are growing at a faster rate than overall businesses in the United States. According the U.S. Census Bureau minority entrepreneurs owned 8 million (29 percent) of the nation’s 27.6 million businesses. However, when it comes to securing financing, minorities face unique challenges.
The Minority Business Development Agency has found that minority entrepreneurs tend to have lower credit scores and fewer assets to secure loans. A 2016 study from the credit bureau Experian found that the average credit score of a minority small business owner is 707, 15 points lower than the average of all small business owners in the U.S.
While there are government resources available to the general public, these grants specifically for minority Americans can help bridge the funding gap:
1. Minority Business Development Agency
The Minority Business Development Agency is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce and has a mission to promote the growth of minority-run businesses. They can help to connect minority business owners to financing resources, federal contacts, and other relevant market opportunities.
2. National Minority Supplier Development Council
The National Minority Supplier Development Council is a member organization that works to increase business opportunities for minority-owned businesses. The organization operate the Business Consortium Fund which offers financing programs and business advisory services for members.
3. SBA 8(a) Business Development Program
The Small Business Administration (SBA) 8(a) Business Development Program is a federally run program that strives to “provide a level playing field for small businesses owned by socially and economically disadvantaged people or entities”. The federal government has a goal to award at least 5 percent of all contracting dollars to small disadvantaged businesses each year.
4. Operation Hope Small-Business Empowerment Program
The Operation Hope Small-Business Empowerment Program is for aspiring entrepreneurs in low-wealth neighborhoods. The program offers financial counseling and business training as well as small business financing options. Participants in the program complete a 12-week training program and have access to workshops on financing, credit, and money management tools.
Financial Assistance for Everyday Living for Minority Americans
There are a number of programs and government resources available to help minority Americans with everyday living and expenses.
1. National Council on Aging
The National Council on Aging provides a benefits directory for low-income seniors or minorities who need assistance. If you need help paying for food, utilities or medicine, you could be eligible for many government programs that help people stretch their money and cover everyday costs.
There are many government programs that may help you pay for food, housing, healthcare and other basic living expenses. Visit USA.govNational Council on Aging for eligibility and application specifics.
Educational Scholarships for Minorities
In addition to grants specifically for minority business owners, there are also educational scholarships for minorities looking to advance their careers with educational opportunities.
1. Xerox Minority Scholarships
The Xerox Minority Scholarship is open to all U.S. Citizens or permanent residents who are minorities and are not the children or spouses of Xerox employees. Applicants must be currently enrolled in a 4-year school or a graduate program and major in technical science or engineering. Scholarships range from $1,000 to $10,000.
2 MCCA Lloyd M. Johnson, Jr. Scholarship Program
The MCCA Lloyd M. Johnson, Jr. Scholarship Program is open to minority law students who are enrolled in or have been accepted to an ABA accredited law school as a full-time student. Applicants must have earned at least a 3.2 GPA as an undergraduate. This scholarship awards $10,000.
3. National Association of Black Journalists
The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) awards between $1,500 - $2,500 to scholarship recipients. Applicants must be members of the NABJ and enrolled full-time at an an accredited school in the United States. Applicants must also be majoring in journalism or a communications-related field.
4. Thurgood Marshall College Fund Altria Scholarship
The Thurgood Marshall College Fund Altria Scholarship awards $3,100 per semester to scholarship recipients. Applicants must be a junior or senior with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 or higher. Students must be recommended for the award by a school counselor or the school’s scholarship coordinator. Recipients are required to major in science, technology, engineering, math, business, accounting, finance, or economics.
Are you a minority entrepreneur? If so, you may be eligible for unique financial opportunities for minority Americans including financing, grants and scholarship opportunities. Contact an expert financial advisor today who can help you get control of your finances and offer assistance with financial opportunities.
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