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We're hitting a big milestone: $100,000 awarded in scholarships!

This year will mark a momentous occasion for the American Experience Foundation. In 2022, we will surpass $100,000 awarded in scholarships. 

That’s 42 scholarships awarded since 2015 that have made a difference in Washington, DC students’ education and college dreams. These scholarships supported students on their journeys through higher education, contributed to earning certifications and ultimately aided in funding their career growth.

AEF awards scholarships to current students and alumni of the six Academies of Hospitality and Tourism and Academies of Culinary Arts in Washington, DC.

“Because of AEF scholarships, I was able to go to college without wondering how I was going to pay for books and other fees.”Deranique Graydon, University of the District of Columbia ‘21

You can make a difference in the lives of young people and support the next generation of hospitality leaders. Will you please make a donation today? 

2022 winners will be announced on May 13.

Donate Now

2022 Washington Auto Show

Thank you to the Washington New Area Automobile Dealers Association for providing student access to the Washington Auto Show. AEF was delighted to bring students from Wilson High School, Roosevelt High School and Maya Angelou Public Charter School back to the show after a year away. The CalPro Group provided insight into the components of planning a widescale convention at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Students experienced the Auto Show, viewed emerging technologies and interacted with industry professionals on the show floor.

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Alumni Spotlight: Zoe Roberts

Destination DC welcomes Zoe Roberts to the Partnerships & Alliances team as the DEI Fellowship Apprentice through a partnership with Tourism Diversity Matters. Zoe will serve as an account manager for the inaugural cohort of Destination DC’s DEI Business Fellowship Program.  Zoe is a two-time winner of an AEF scholarship, a past AEF intern, an alumnus of Wilson High School’s Academy of Hospitality and Tourism and a current George Mason tourism and events management student.

Here is what Zoe had to say about her experiences and what she looks forward to this year:

“I am beyond appreciative of the time AEF and Destination DC have invested in my education and career. Their contributions have helped shape me into the tourism professional I am today. I look forward to the opportunity to contribute to the recovery and growth of tourism in Washington, DC and to promote the true essence of the city through the small businesses that impact and connect the local community.” 

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Educator Profile: Meet Oscar Platero

AEF is excited to welcome a new member to our extended workforce development and education family in DC. Oscar Platero is a Career and Technical Education and Workforce Development Professional with experience working with youth and lifelong learners. He recently joined the Office of the State Superintendent of Education as a Work-based Learning Coordinator where he connects career experiences to classroom learning to help prepare high school students in the hospitality and tourism academies for future careers. As a former Career Academy Coordinator with DCPS, Oscar facilitated work-based learning opportunities and college and career preparation for students in grades 9 through 12.

Connect with Oscar

In Case You Missed It: Check Out "Why DC?"

Experience DC through the various leaders in our hospitality community to learn what makes DC such a great place for students to learn about the industry. 

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