Established in 2014, the Dr. Toni Jo Mason Scholarship Fund Program is designed to
serve as a lasting tribute to the vision, mission, life work, and example of Dr. Toni
Jo Mason to overcome obstacles and the struggle experienced by people with disabilities.
Dr. Mason was diagnosed with cerebral palsy soon after birth. Her parents, both educators,
created an encouraging environment that enabled and supported her belief that she
could and would accomplish anything other children could do with time and determination.
Dr. Mason’s life and career was a commitment to ensure that all people with disabilities
were recognized by their abilities, provided encouragement, equal opportunities, and
support to dream, learn, and achieve their fullest potential.
As an educator and humanitarian, Dr. Mason helped pave the way for all children with
disabilities nationally. She contributed to the development of Section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and served as a federal child compliance officer for the
United States Department of Education. She also developed and implemented the self-study
and transition plans for Section 504 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
As a federal child compliance officer, Dr. Mason traveled nationally and to ensure
the intent and spirit of the law was implemented and upheld.
Mason also had an important impact within Florida K-12 school system. As a coordinator
of diagnostic services for the Leon County School district in Tallahassee, Florida
she initiated action on the part of the school district to make elementary school
playgrounds accessible to students with physical disabilities. Dr. Mason considered
her work to implement accessible playgrounds in elementary schools a major accomplishment
to both raise awareness and support equal access for children.
Purpose of Establishing Non-Endowed Collegiate Academic Scholarship Programs with
The Dr. Toni Jo Mason Academic Scholarship Funds are established in partnership with
educational institutions for full-time undergraduate student(s) with a physical disability
and demonstrated financial need. Funds are to be used for the cost of college/university
tuition, books, fees and/or technology to support the academic achievement of the
The Dr. Toni Jo Mason Academic Scholarship, funded by the Dr. Toni Jo Mason Academic
Scholarship Fund, is a competitively awarded program which is available to undergraduate
students with disabilities enrolled at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
(FAMU). This scholarship is an annual award not to exceed $3,000 an academic year and can be received for a total of two (2) academic years. Students must meet the following requirements to be considered for scholarship selection:
- Be a full-time, incoming freshman, current undergraduate student, or transfer student;
- Provide documentation of the nature and/or extent of a physical disability;
- Submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Renewal FAFSA form by
the required deadline and be determined to have unmet fiscal need;
- Complete a Dr. Toni Jo Mason Academic Scholarship Application Form; and
- Have and maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.50