In 2016, Appalachian Connection awarded its inaugural scholarship to Lauren Little from Hazard High School. Lauren is now attending Alice Lloyd College where she is a second semester freshman (although rapidly moving up classes!). She will be checking in on the blog occasionally to let us know how she’s doing:
I had a great first semester at college, and because of all the dual credit classes and hard work I put in during high school I am already one semester and a couple summer classes away from being a junior. My first semester has caused me to face challenges and overcome them. It was hard to find things to like because I missed home, but moving from Hazard to Pippa Passes isn’t all that different. It’s comforting to be in a place that is still like the small town I love. This new environment has allowed me to meet many new people. All of the faculty, teachers, and students I have had the pleasure of working with are exceedingly friendly and supportive, maintaining that small town feel. Many of whom congratulated me when they saw the WYMT feature where John and George presented me with the Appalachian Connection scholarship. Along with my scholarship I am employed through the work study program and a job outside of school. Thanks to this combination I will not have any trouble paying for my college education. Alice Lloyd is a tuition guaranteed school so no students have to pay tuition if they live in the 108 county service area; however, every student still has to pay for room and board, matriculation fees, books, and other such expenses. For resident students, this all adds up to close to $9,000, but after my financial aid and scholarship are added in the cost is lowered to a considerably more manageable amount. Without this scholarship, I would not be able to live on campus which would have taken away from my college experience, accessibility to the library, studying time for classes, and not to mention adding gas money and a two hour commute every day. I hope that people continue to donate to this foundation so that the Appalachian Connection Scholarship can help more students like it did me.