The Shanese Washington Memorial Scholarship
Shanese Washington was a believer, teacher, basketball coach, mentor, and entrepreneur whose life work was to inspire our youth all while living a purpose-driven life, happy and fulfilled.
Shanese served as FIYA’s beloved Director of Special Projects and passed away suddenly in April of 2020. She was genuine, hardworking, and overall a fun individual to work with and someone who contributed significantly to FIYA in many ways. She was excited about the future of FIYA and about her role in continuing to make FIYA a premier school-based youth sports program. Her driving passion was the youth she met, coached and mentored. More importantly, Shanese was a fantastic human being with her gentle, happy personality and her calm, cool demeanor. We know that she developed special connections with our coaches, administrators and student athletes.
In order to fuel our scholarship fund for deserving students for years to come, please consider making a tax-deductible donation today!
Because of the tremendous impact she had on our organization and in our community, starting with the 2021-2022 school year, FIYA has established in her honor "The Shanese Washington Memorial Scholarship" - an annual $1,000 scholarship fund to be given to two (2) participating FIYA student-athletes, to which each will receive $500 for their educational endeavors.
The deserving recipients shall be graduating 8th graders who played in FIYA during his/her 8th grade year and best exemplifies the words and values of the FIYA Sportsmanship Pledge, which is recited by both teams before each FIYA game at center court or midfield. The applicant will then answer in an essay of 750 words or less to the following question: “What life lessons have I learned from playing on my school sports team(s) in FIYA and how will it impact me in high school and beyond?” Please see below for specific criteria, eligibility, and directions for our scholarship application process.
Whether it was through her teaching, coaching, her organization PIC3, or through her incredible involvement here at FIYA, Shanese worked day in and day out to inspire student athletes to maximize their potential both on and off the playing field. She was fully committed to motivating and mentoring students and athletes to strive for excellence and to demonstrate leadership, accountability, and self sufficiency in order to achieve their goals. Shanese herself was the perfect example of someone who lived by the words and values of the FIYA Sportsmanship Pledge. It was an absolute privilege to know and work with her, and it's an even bigger honor to dedicate this scholarship in her name.
Although she is no longer with us in person, her spirit is very much alive in all that we do at FIYA. It is our hope that her memory will continue to inspire and impact the lives of young student-athletes for years to come through The Shanese Washington Memorial Scholarship.
Click here to donate to the scholarship fund
THE Shanese Washington Memorial video
ABOUT SHANESE & HER LEGACY
Born in Inglewood, CA Shanese Washington attended Westchester High School and later played for LMU Women’s Basketball from 1999-2001.
After her time as an athlete, she found her greatest strength was in coaching youth sports which gave her the opportunity to mentor young lives to make a difference. She coached girls varsity basketball at Inglewood High School for several years before she found her way to St. Jerome School where she taught P.E. and coached girls volleyball and basketball.
In 2019, Shanese officially became part of the FIYA staff while simultaneously founding her own organization she proudly titled “PIC3”, a well-balanced basketball training program for our youth. “PIC3” proudly stood for “Positive Impact Coaching” and the “3” is for the three P’s that were of upmost significance to her: preparation, perseverance, and prosperity. She did everything in her power to provide the resources and personal mentorship needed in a positive environment where student athletes could learn the important values of preparation, perseverance, and having a positive mental attitude.
Shanese knew what it meant to be a champion, not just in sports but in life, and her genuine passion was in sharing that with others. She believed the secret to being a champion wasn’t just by being successful at a sport. Instead, she believed being a champion meant bridging the gap between sports and education, health, and personal development to produce not only better athletes but better people and well-rounded individuals. Those are truly the real champions.
Shanese carried out this mission in all that she did, and especially with us here at FIYA. She left the biggest of marks on our community because she believed in the words of our pledge, in the mission of our organization, and most importantly she believed in all of our student-athletes. Her presence and her work will never be forgotten, and we hope this scholarship serves as one of the many ways we will carry on her legacy.
Her spirit, her visions, and her purpose will indefinitely live on in all that we do at FIYA. Because Coach Shanese was the epitome of what it meant to be a champion.
SCHOLARSHIP SPECIFICS & CRITERIA
- Starting with the 2021-2022 school year, an annual $1000 scholarship fund to be awarded to (2) two participating FIYA student athletes, preferably one male and one female for which each will receive $500. The scholarship will be open for submissions starting April 1, 2023.
- Eligibility: A graduating 8th grade student who played in any FIYA athletic events during his/her 8th grade year and best exemplifies the FIYA Sportsmanship Pledge. A minimum of 1 sport participation; multiple sport participation viewed as a plus but not a requirement.
- A School Coach or School Administrator must submit an email to SWScholarship@onfiya.org on or before May 1, 2023.The email shall state the name of the student athlete and his/her school as well as list the sports that he/she played in FIYA during 8th grade. Attached to the email shall be a one-page essay written by the student athlete.
- Applicant essay shall answer the following:
“What life lessons have I learned from playing on my school sports team(s) in FIYA and how will it impact me in high school and beyond?” Essays should be NO MORE than 750 words.
- FIYA will present the top applications to the SW Scholarship Committee and the Committee will decide the winners on June 1, 2023.
- TSWM Scholarship will be funded by donations, sale of FIYA photos, proceeds from FIYA adult leagues and other fundraising endeavors. If you’d like to contribute to the fund or share the link with others, please click here.
2022-23 DATES & DEADLINES
- April 1, 2023: Nominations/ essay submissions will be made open to the FIYA community
- May 1, 2023: Submission deadline
- June 1, 2023: Committee will decide the scholarship recipients
- June 3, 2023: Recipients will be notified and announced to the FIYA community
The FIYA Sportsmanship Pledge
"I pledge to always show respect to my teammates, opponents, coaches, and the officials; to show good sportsmanship in both winning and losing; and to compete to the best of my abilities at all times."
Check out our video above to see the FIYA Sportsmanship Pledge in full effect and visit our Sportsmanship page to gain a deeper understanding of why its words and symbolism are important to FIYA, Shanese's legacy, and to our community.