Four Lompoc Valley high school graduates from the Class of 2016 were recently awarded scholarships from an organization that aims to help minority students.

Forum Enterprises, an entertainment and sports management group headed by CEO Kevin Columbus, gave out the $1,000 scholarships to two students each from Lompoc and Cabrillo high schools. The scholarship recipients were Noah Aragon and Kyung-Soon Richardson from LHS, and Alex Tulloch and Edith Vargas from CHS.

The number of scholarships is double what Forum Enterprises awarded last year.

“We were able to make some adjustments in our scholarship approach and in turn, we were able to provide more scholarship opportunities,” said T.C. Webb Jr., Forum Enterprises’ executive director of community services. “As an organization, we feel great about that.”

Tulloch, who graduated with a 3.8 GPA, plans to attend Ohio State University and major in medicine.

Vargas, who amassed a 4.2 GPA, will attend Pepperdine University and plans to major in law in an effort to practice immigration law.

Aragon, who had a 4.1 GPA, is planning to attend Cal Poly and also major in law.

Richardson, who finished high school with a 3.7 GPA, plans to attend California State University, Los Angeles. She has not yet decided on a major, but is considering anthropology and public relations.

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Last year’s scholarship recipients, Derrick Portis from LHS and Marisela Morales from CHS, are each enrolled at an institution of higher learning.

Portis is on the football team and was named to the dean’s list at Upper Iowa University. Morales is involved in several organizations at Cal Poly.

The scholarship program isn’t the only way that Forum Enterprises, which is based out of L.A. and Las Vegas, has connected with the Lompoc community.

The organization put on a holiday season event at the United Boys and Girls Club of Lompoc in 2014, provided more than 40 Thanksgiving baskets to families in need in 2015 and gave four families $300 for a Christmas Eve shopping spree last December.

Forum Enterprises CEO Columbus, who is from Lompoc, has said he feels it is important "to give back to the community where we were raised.”

Willis Jacobson covers the city of Lompoc for Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Follow him on Twitter @WJacobsonLR.

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