BOWIE, Md. — Michelin North America Inc. has ended its sponsorship of the annual Michelin/Tire Industry Association (TIA) Scholarship program after a 27-year partnership that resulted in the issuance of over $500,000 in scholarship funding to more than 80 recipients affiliated with TIA member companies.
In a prepared statement, Michelin said: "We are proud of our contributions to the Tire Industry Association Scholarship Fund and the positive impact it has had on the lives of our dealers and their families.
"Periodically, we evaluate our strategy to ensure we are investing in areas of the greatest need and where we can have the greatest impact. We will continue to pursue community relations activities in the communities where we operate."
TIA said it is exploring "different avenues" for potential scholarship opportunities in the future, but there are no set plans as of now.
Michelin North America established the scholarship program in 1995 together with TIA predecessor National Tire Dealers & Retreaders Association for employees of tire dealerships that were members of the NTDRA, which morphed into the Tire Association of North America (TANA) in 2001 and then to
TIA a year later. Applicants had to be part-time employees or dependent children of full-time employees of TIA member companies. The scholarship funds were earmarked for use for tuition, fees and books at an accredited two- or four-year college, technical or vocational school.
Once awarded, the recipients were able to renew the scholarship for up to three additional years provided they met certain conditions.
The winners traditionally were announced at TIA's annual membership meeting held prior to the start of the SEMA Show in Las Vegas.