By Ken Steadman
Kids on the Rise (KOTR) has been awarding college scholarships to qualifying graduating high school seniors for the past three years. Students who apply must be a current mentee with KOTR and been in the program for at least four years. Students who continue their higher education are awarded a scholarship each year they are enrolled in a qualifying program of study in a post-secondary institution, vocational school or trade school. Scholarship amounts are determined on a year-to-year basis.
Gene Skipworth proposed the establishment of a scholarship fund for KOTR students several years ago when he was serving as executive director. He created a plan and recommended a money amount to get the program started. There were no high school seniors at the time but Gene introduced the idea to the board of directors who approved it for future students. The program will now be known as the “Kids on the Rise Gene Skipworth Scholarship Fund.”
Deanna Sola was the first student to receive scholarship funds in 2012. She is now a sophomore at Tennessee Tech University and has been awarded scholarship funds each year. Deanna is majoring in civil engineering and has a 3.37 GPA.
Alishia Hill received her scholarship in 2013 and was awarded again this year. She is enrolled as a freshman at Roane State Community College where she made the dean’s list with a 3.75 GPA. She is pursuing a degree in nutrition science.
Three Stone Memorial High School seniors were scholarship recipients in 2014:
Felisha Atkinson has enrolled at Austin Peay State University and plans to major in genetics with the goal of genetic disease research. Bailey Mathes plans to enroll at Pellissippi State Community College to study nursing. Janki Patel is enrolling at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville where she will major in accounting.
Much thanks and appreciation is acknowledged to Volunteer Energy Cooperative’s VECustomers Share Program for their continuous support through a grant for the lunch event. A special note of thanks to the Fairfield Glade Lions Club for their generous donation to the scholarship fund. And, special gratitude to the services of John Cahill of K-Pro/Cahill Productions who graciously volunteered his time, talent and resources as the photographer for the event.