Begining in 2015 and recurring every four years, the Economic Club of Tampa hosts the Mayoral Inaugural Ball, a black tie formal event immediately following the official swearing in ceremony. The Ball immediately become one of the city's premiere social events celebrating the newly elected Mayor of Tampa and honoring current and previous city leaders. Net proceeds fund Florida Prepaid College Scholarships for academically successful, but underserved and financially challenged local students. Through our partner, the Hillsborough Education Foundation (a tax exempt 501(c)3 nonprofit organization), we are able to obtain matching contributions from the State of Florida, nearly doubling our benefits to students.
The Hillsborough Education Foundation helps to assure student success by interviewing and screening applications, signing scholars to a written contract, recruiting and developing mentors (volunteers) for each recipient, providing college success coaches and coordinating college tours. All of these services combined with the promise of a college scholarship substantially increase high school graduation rates of these underserved students from 60 percent to 98 percent.