Central Florida real-estate entrepreneur and career coach John Crossman has donated $25,000 to the Valencia Foundation to establish an endowed scholarship at Valencia College. Crossman, a former trustee at Valencia College, has requested that preference be given to a Hispanic student preparing for a career related to real estate.
The first scholarship will be awarded to a student in fall 2021.
Crossman,former president of Orlando-based Crossman & Co., one of the Southeast’s leading commercial real-estate firms, is now CEO of Crossman Career Builders.
“My family has a deep love and appreciation for Valencia College and are honored to be in the position to create this scholarship. We share a passion with Valencia College on seeing greatness in marginalized people in our community. The focus of this scholarship is real estate education in the Hispanic community as we believe that the ownership of property is key to the prosperity of all people,” said Crossman.
Leaders in the local Hispanic community applauded the announcement. “As a young college student paying my own way at Orlando Junior College, I had only lived in the U.S. for three years and my parents had not joined me here. I was out of money and about to drop out, but I had the help of a scholarship to see me through the most difficult time,” said Mel Martinez, former U.S. senator and secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. “The Crossman family is doing the same thing today for another fortunate young Hispanic working their way through college. This is worthy of a big thank you from me and our entire community.”
“The Crossman Career Builders Scholarship creates educational accessibility opportunities that, in the long run, will fuel prosperity and economic development of our Hispanic community,” said Oscar Cristancho Mercado, Valencia’s assistant vice president for budgets and analysis, who also serves on the executive board of directors for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for Metro Orlando.
“Encouraging our Hispanic youth to continue their academic goals, this scholarship will help students achieve their career goals,” said Guillermo Hansen, publisher of El Osceola Star newspaper, the founder of the Hispanic Heritage Scholarship Fund of Metro Orlando and a trustee at Valencia College. “We very much appreciate this generous contribution.”
“As someone with Cuban heritage, I am pleased to see John Crossman endowing a scholarship in real estate at Valencia College,” said Francisco Gonzalez, host of the “Agents of Innovation” podcast. “One of the main reasons my father and grandparents left Cuba was because private property rights were taken away from the people. Those rights are the foundation of liberty and self-reliance. Part ofthe American dream is being able to freely own and operate private property here. The Crossman Career Builders scholarship will provide those of Hispanic heritage the opportunity to build their American dream by learning the foundations of real estate at Valencia College here in the greater Orlando area.”
Crossman says his goal is to inspire, motivate and coach a new generation of entrepreneurs and leaders in one of the most challenging times in American history.
Son of the late pastor and noted civil-rights advocate, Rev. Kenneth Crossman, Crossman and his family have created endowed scholarships at colleges and universities across Florida, including Crossman Career Builder Scholarships at Florida State University, University of Central Florida, Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University and Bethune-Cookman University.
For more information on the scholarship or the Valencia Foundation, please visit www.valencia.org