The deadline for entries for this great opportunity is quickly approaching. If you know of students in high school or college, encourage them to apply with an essay about an African-American who has influenced their lives.

In celebration of Black History Month, Regions Bank is again offering students an opportunity to earn funds to pay for their educations through its annual Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest. Now in its eighth year, with this year’s awards, the program will have awarded more than $1 million since its inception in 2012.

The Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest is open to high school seniors as well as college freshmen, sophomores and juniors. Scholarships are granted in the amount of $5,000 for high school winners and $3,500 for college winners. Awards are based on the results of an essay contest, where each applicant submits a 500-word essay about how an African-American has been an inspiration in the applicant’s life.

For official rules, complete entry details and eligibility requirements, visit the contest website at www.regions.com/ridingforward. (No purchase or banking relationship is required to enter the contest).