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Making Education Attainable: The Impact of Scholarships

The financial requirements of higher education are a burden on many families. Central Carolina Community Foundation is committed to empowering future leaders through its more than 200 scholarship opportunities.

With the help of generous donors, students can focus on their studies and professional development. There are many different scholarships offered through the Community Foundation, each with different eligibility criteria based on recommendations from the donor. After completing the online application, students will be matched with the scholarships for which they are eligible.

Haven Curtis is a junior, undergraduate student, at the University of South Carolina who received the Milford H. Wessinger Scholarship award.

“Because of this award, I have been able to fully fund my undergraduate education and feel fully confident about my financial future as I continue my education in medical school. Without your gift, I would not have been able to afford my dreams of becoming a doctor,” Curtis said.

For the Estelle Jones Non-traditional Student Scholarship, preference is given to non-traditional students with some degree of life and work experience, rather than persons recently out of high school.

“As a non-traditional student who is also a husband and father working full-time, going back to school seemed so far out of reach and a financial strain. Because of generous donors, continued education is possible for someone in my position,” says Jason Jones, Estelle Jones Non-traditional Student Scholarship recipient. Jones, who is currently a student at Midlands Technical College, is planning to transfer to Limestone University where he will earn a bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management.

“My goal is to affect change in employment policies and procedures that will have a positive and lasting effect on my community,” Jones went on to say. “I am committed to using this prestigious award to continue my pursuit of academic excellence and reaching the highest standards of the goals that I have set for myself.”

Some other eligibility requirements are based on the field of study or future career goals. Due to the intense pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic on health care professionals, the nursing field has become increasingly important and scholarship recipients Jasmine Waring and Lakita Boyd are on track to become registered nurses.

Waring is a student at Howard University and received the LinksScholars Scholarship. She said the scholarship helped alleviate financial stress for her family and helped her take time to focus on her studies and her mental health. She also mentioned that the pandemic has been a learning experience in “lessons, never losses.”

“This coming school year, I will be in the Upper Division course of Howard’s nursing program. I am forever grateful for the opportunity and privilege of being a recipient of the LinksScholars Scholarship,” Waring said.

Boyd is a student at Spartanburg Community College and was a First Choice Members Scholarship recipient. Boyd also works to impact her local community through educational seminars.

“Every year, I put together a PowerPoint presentation called, ‘Reach One Teach One,’ which is a preteen/teen education seminar. We have discussions about things such as life goals, friend choices, gangs, sex education, police brutality, college opportunities, investments, suicide and depression, etc.,” Boyd said.

Boyd also said she is currently working on another educational seminar about financial responsibility that will include her personal experience with the First Choice Members Scholarship.

These scholarship opportunities do not only make more attainable the cost of higher education but also have a lasting impact on their recipients by inspiring students to become leaders in the community.

To learn more about the scholarships that are available for the 2022-2023 school year, visit www.yourfoundation.org/scholarships to view eligibility criteria and complete the online application.

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