Brooks ‘15 has been featured on CNN Heroes for her work in her non-profit ScholarCHIPS, an organization benefiting students with an incarcerated parent.
Yasmine Arrington Brooks ’15 has recently been nominated for CNN Hero of the Year for her nonprofit, ScholarCHIPS, and has advanced to the Top 10 CNN Heroes. In which the winner will be selected live on CNN on Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. ET.
“ScholarCHIPS offers community-building for our scholars, both virtually and in-person,” Brooks told CNN. “It’s definitely a lifeline. We all are connected, particularly because of the lived and shared experience of having an incarcerated parent. So, we all sort of bond off that shared experience.”
Brooks was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and grew up with her father incarcerated. Facing the challenges of parental incarceration, she decided to establish her nonprofit ScholarCHIPS in 2010 at the age of 16.
ScholarCHIPS provides a variety of resources such as scholarships, mentoring and a supportive network for young people with incarcerated parents looking to attend higher education. The organization works to provide a safe space for individuals to share their experiences both with having an incarcerated parent, but also through any other struggles the scholars might be faced with as they work toward their degrees.
To date, ScholarCHIPS has awarded more than $500,000 in college scholarships to 88 scholars, now with 40 graduates. Arrington is a poet, blogger, motivational speaker and plus-size model. She has been featured in TeenVogue, Essence, Black Enterprise and Forbes Magazine and multiple times on ABC7 News and in The Washington Post for her community work.
Arrington graduated from Elon with a bachelor’s degree in strategic communications and history. She graduated from Howard University with her Master of Divinity degree in 2018. In 2013, she received the Iris Holt McEwen Community Service Award during the Omicron Delta Kappa Awards. She received the Samuel Huntington Public Service Award in 2015 for her work with ScholarCHIPS which came with a $15,000 stipend to aid her efforts for up to a year before graduating.
Voting for CNN Hero of the Year closes on Tuesday, Dec. 5. Every person can submit up to 10 votes a day, every day from now through the close of voting. To participate in CNN Heroes voting, click here.