The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation announced today – in conjunction with National Girls and Women in Sports Day – that applications are officially open for the third annual Buccaneers Girls in Football Scholarship.
The scholarship is available to high school girls nationwide who play organized football, want to pursue a career in sports, have earned a minimum 3.0 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) during their high school academic career, are scheduled to graduate this spring and plan to enroll full-time at an accredited four-year college or university.
Applications are open until April 20, 2022. The scholarship recipients will be announced at a later date.
In 2020, the Buccaneers became the first NFL team to establish a scholarship of this kind, made possible through a $250,000 commitment by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation. Last year, the four 2021 scholarship winners – Jordan Bryant (University of Florida), Shivanie Ghansiam (University of Florida), Malia Hollins (Howard University) and Lydia Houle (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) were delivered the news that they had received the scholarship by tight end Rob Gronkowski, who surprised the recipients and congratulated them on their achievements.
"The Buccaneers see the passion, the drive and the love that we have for the sport," said Ghansiam, who plays on the University of Florida flag football team with Bryant. "I truly want to impact the sports industry. It's about that recognition and bringing awareness to the sport of flag football, opening the doors and having a large audience see that we really love what we do. I want to open people's eyes to a new sports realm."
The Girls in Football Scholarship is just one of the ways the organization is committed to gender equality both on and off the field. In 2021, the team launched the Women's Summit for Careers in Football, an ongoing program that strengthens the pipeline of women pursuing NFL careers through informative, engaging sessions featuring high-profile hosts and Buccaneers leadership. For the past three years, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation has hosted the largest girls flag football tournament in the country with the Girls High School Flag Football Preseason Classic, presented by AdventHealth. The multi-day event brings together more than 50 high school teams and over 1,000 student athletes in a round robin-style competition to kick off the high school flag football season in Florida. The team also established the Jr. Bucs Girls Flag Football League, a first-of-its-kind league in the City of Tampa, where the Foundation covers league fees and equipment for all girls who play. And through in-school programming, the Jr. Bucs Middle School initiative brings flag football to more than 35,000 middle school girls every year. To learn more, visit Buccaneers.com/community.