For the third year in a row, the Church's Partners Foundation is not only continuing its Church's® Scholars Program, but is also expanding it. The non-profit arm of Church's Chicken® is committed to awarding $1,000 scholarships to 225 recipients this year, up from 175 students last year.

"The response to the Church's Scholars Program has been tremendous," said Edward Brett, president of the Foundation. "We had 7,000 applicants last year, and we're expecting even more this year. We also have seen a great deal of support from local communities and national organizations wishing to help fund the program, so we hope to keep expanding in the future." Funds for the Church's Scholars Program are raised primarily through the sale of coupon booklets that offer deals at select Church's Chicken restaurants, but private donations from vendors and employees also play a significant fundraising role. The program also received a$5,000 Newcomer's Award from the International Franchising Association's Franchising Gives Back program that is included in this year's funding.

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Scholarships will be awarded to graduating high school seniors who demonstrate leadership, excellence in academics, participation in school and community activities, honors and awards, and work experience.