Clay Cane is a New York City-based writer who is recognized for his contributions in journalism. Clay is a regular contributor for various print and online publications such as The Advocate and BET.com. He is the author of the highly anticipated novel Ball-Shaped World, which is a fictionalized account of the black and Latino ballroom scene. Also, he is the Entertainment Editor at BET.com and a member of New York Film Critics Online. He can be reached at claycane@gmail.com.


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    Friday, January 26, 2007


    If you read my interview with the Legendary Father Jay Manolo-Blahnik in my November Ballroom Feature you will remember the House of Manolo-Blahnik started a scholarship for the ballroom community. Jay stated, "I wanted to support education in the ball community. I conceptualized a scholarship where there is a pot of money for school and it can be any kind of school. Not necessarily a four year institution, it can be a trade school, it can be a cosmetology program – whatever your inspiration is, whatever your dream is -- we want to support people in that." As promised by the House of Manolo-Blahnik pasted below please find the information for the Tony Milan scholarship—a full description of the scholarship, how to apply and deadlines. I recommend every person in the ballroom scene who has aspirations for higher education to apply. As we all know from my interviews with Jazmine Manolo-Blahnik, Father Jay Manolo-Blahnik and my upcoming February Ballroom Feature with the legendary Ayana Khan (who has her BA and in a first year Master's program) education is attainable regardless of your finances or social standing—you just need the drive. Congrats to the House of Manolo-Blahnik in this groundbreaking step for the ballroom scene!

    The Tony Milan Scholarship Fund was established in 2006 by the House of Manolo Blahnik (MB) to support the educational and ballroom success of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) members of the “ballroom” community. The Tony Milan Scholarship Fund encourages LGBT community members to aspire to positions in which they contribute to society, are open about their sexual orientation and act as role models for their peers.

    Members of the ballroom community are often viewed as outcast within the larger, mainstream communities. The House of MB values all of the contributions of ballroom community members academic and otherwise. The House of MB seeks to invest in the future of ball patrons who make valuable contributions to the ballroom community. The House of MB seeks to shift community norms by creating tangible recognition for individuals who make such contributions and to highlight these contributions.


    The Tony Milan Scholarship Fund is granted to LGBT individuals of color, who participate in Balls, and are enrolled in an accredited institution of higher learning and/or individuals who are graduating seniors who have been accepted to an accredited institution of higher learning.


    ELIGIBILITY


    African Americans, Asian Pacific Islanders, Hispanics and other racial/ethnic minority persons who participate in the “ballroom/house” community who are enrolled at an accredited college; graduate or professional/technical school, or who are accepted to an accredited college, university or technical school.


    Members of the House of Manolo Blahnik are not eligible to apply. Former Tony Milan Scholars are not eligible to apply.


    AWARDS DESCRIPTION


    The House of Manolo Blahnik will issue a one time award in the amount of $1,000 to $5,000 to each student selected.


    APPLICATION DEALINE


    Applications are due March 15, 2007. Recipients will be announced on or before May 1, 2007. Award checks will be sent directly to the school or institution of the award recipients by August 30, 2007.


    HOW TO APPLY

    The House of Manolo Blahnik is pleased to announce the online scholarship application processes for 2007-08. For scholarship applications and guidelines, please e-mail info@houseofblahnik.com.


    ABOUT TONY MILAN

    For over twenty years, ‘Hall of Fame’ recipient, Tony Milan, has and continues to make a lasting impression in the hearts and minds of ball patrons around the country. He is recognized nationally as a leader and role model within the ballroom community.

    Founder and leader, Roger Milan believed in Tony’s educational advancement. Through heartfelt conversation, Roger said… “Tony you are wasting your time going to non-challenging schools just so you can walk balls. Balls will always be here but opportunity won’t.” Tony listened, then applied to Morehouse College, got accepted and left New York.


    After being crowned Legendary Face in the summer of 1993, Tony graduated Morehouse College in 1994. Afterward, Tony moved to Chicago to pursue his career. Soon, he learned the only gay supporter of his education, Roger Milan, was dying from an awful disease. He made a promise to him not to allow the House of Milan to fold. He returned to Atlanta where he and Duane started the Atlanta chapter of Milan. He then helped to start the Florida chapter. He eventually moved back to NY; and with the help of Hicopy, got the NY Milan chapter back on its feet to be one of the most revered and respected houses in the ballroom scene.


    Tony Milan is an educated leader, community advocate, and celebrated LEGEND. Tony Milan lives by the motto—“IT’S NOT WHEN IT’S WHETHER!”

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    Posted by Clay :: 11:02 AM :: 0 comments
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