The Society of Cosmetic Chemists (SCC) has created the Madam C.J. Walker Scholarship program to support under-represented minority students pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in chemical, physical, medical, pharmaceutical, biological or related sciences and technology. The two scholarships under the program are part of SCC’s new diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in the cosmetic and personal care industry. They are funded by Mary Kay Inc.
Madam C.J. Walker (born Sarah Breedlove; 1867-1919) was an American entrepreneur, philanthropist and political and social activist. She is regarded as the first female self-made millionaire in America. Walker made her fortune by developing and marketing a line of cosmetics and hair care products for Black women through the business she founded, Madam C.J. Walker Manufacturing Co.
The scholarships will award $5,000 to two under-represented minority individuals (Black/African American, Native/American Indian, and Latinx/Hispanic American) who are pursuing an undergraduate or post-graduate degree in chemical, physical, medical, pharmaceutical, biological or related sciences and technology.
The SCC will also provide each awardee a $250 travel voucher, one night’s accommodation, and a complimentary full access registration to attend the SCC 75th Annual Meeting & Showcase, Dec. 14-15, where he/she will be presented with the scholarship at the awards breakfast.
“Madam C. J. Walker is an icon who spent her entire career breaking through barriers to become one of the nation’s greatest entrepreneurs despite the many obstacles that stood in her path,” said Dr. Lucy Gildea, Chief Scientific Officer at Mary Kay. “It is important that we continue to honor her legacy by supporting young, minority scientists. By partnering with SCC and creating the Madam C.J. Walker scholarship, we hope to inspire and empower the next generation of student scientists who want to follow in Walker’s footsteps.”
“The SCC is committed to efforts to support diversity, equity and inclusion for all participants in the cosmetics and personal care industry,” added Erica O’Grady, CAE, CEO of SCC. “We are grateful for the generous support of our scholarship sponsor, Mary Kay Inc., in assisting us with these efforts to educate under-represented groups pursuing degrees related to cosmetic and personal care product development.”