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First responders scholarships announced

The College Board announced a new fund Wednesday to provide scholarships for first responders and their children, prompted by events surrounding the Boston Marathon bombing and the Texas fertilizer plant explosion.

The scholarship will be awarded each year to a student who performs well on the ­College Board’s PSAT/NMSQT and SAT assessments and who has demonstrated civic engagement and leadership in his or her community.

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“We at MIT are moved that the College Board is honoring our own Sean Collier and other first responders in the Boston tragedy,” MIT chancellor Eric Grimson said in a statement. “As a member of the College Board, we are so pleased this scholarship recognizes the courage of first responders.”

Collier was an MIT police ­officer who was killed, allegedly by the Boston Marathon bombing suspects, days after the initial attack last week. First ­responders were praised in the aftermath of the bombings, which left three people dead, for rushing into danger to aid the wounded.

Volunteer firefighters were among those killed last week in the fertilizer plant explosion in the town of West, Texas.

“At colleges and universities around this country, campus ­security and other first respond­ers work every day to keep students safe,” College Board president David ­Coleman said in a statement. “Many of them develop bonds of trust and friendship with students in their care. They become guardians away from home. This scholarship honors the distinctive role first respond­ers play in the campus community and in educating and protecting young people.”

The College Board plans to work with its member institutions to raise money for the scholarship fund, and hopes to award the first scholarship by year end.

The amount of the award will depend on how much money is raised.

The College Board will administer the award and provide seed funding, although the organ­ization did not say how much.

“We hope that a generation of first responders and their children can follow a path blazed by the heroes we honor today,” Coleman said in the statement.

To learn how to donate, ­e-mail firstrespondersfund

Calvin Hennick can be reached at
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