POPLARVILLE – Ninety-one Pearl River Community College students from throughout Pearl River Valley Electric Power Association’s 12-county service area are receiving scholarships of $975 to attend PRCC this year, thanks to the generous spirit and support of the Association’s member-consumers.
More than 200 students from throughout PRVEPA’s service area are receiving these scholarships to attend state community colleges.
This is the third year for the Round Up for Education scholar’s program, which is funded by members who round their bills up to the nearest dollar each month. Scholarships are available to members who do the round up, as well as for their spouses or dependent children who are enrolled as freshmen this fall.
“We are sincerely grateful for the commitment to this scholarship program that has been developed by the Pearl River Valley Electric Power Association,” said PRCC President William Lewis. “Our students continue to benefit from the generous efforts of the PRVEPA members who support this program. The commitment they have made to this program is making a difference in the lives of many students who attend PRCC and other community colleges in the PRVEPA service area.”
PRVEPA serves more than 48,000 meters. Since the Round Up program began in November 2012, more than $617,000 has been collected and deposited in an account overseen by the Greater Pine Belt Community Foundation.
“Throughout our history, Pearl River Valley Electric has not only been providing electric service to rural areas, but working to improve the quality of life of our members and the communities where they live,” said General Manager Randy Wallace. “We believe that education is vital to improving the future for all of us in south Mississippi, and the Round Up program was designed to encourage more young people to further their education.
“Members working together to achieve a common goal is a unique hallmark of cooperative organizations, and I am proud of the positive response we’ve received on this effort. More than 90 percent of our members continue to round up their bills and we’re very thankful for their support.”
At least ten percent of each year’s funds are set aside in an endowed fund for future use. The remaining money is divided equally between the number of eligible applicants, resulting this year in 209 scholarships worth $975 per student (the maximum award per the program’s guidelines is $1000).
In the program’s three years, more than 550 students have now received scholarships.
“The Round Up for Education Scholarship program is the largest scholarship program we manage,” said Theresa Erickson, executive director of the PineBelt Community Foundation. “We often see how small contributions from large numbers of people can grow into significant amounts that benefit many individuals, and when people continue their education it not only benefits the individual, but it also benefits their family and ultimately their community.”
Round Up for Education funds collected after Aug. 1 go toward next year’s scholarships. Applications for 2016 scholarships will be available beginning in November.
Recipients of Round Up for Education scholarships at Pearl River Community College were on hand Tuesday, Oct. 20, for a ceremonial presentation of a check from Pearl River Valley Electric Power Association general manager Randy Wallace to PRCC. Pictured are, seated from left, Jonathan Sims of Bassfield, Keri Smith of Purvis, Kamryne Watson of Sandy Hook, Aaron Graham of Foxworth, Tarish Mallard of Columbia; second row, Jack Gurley of Sumrall, Chyann Powell of Columbia, Terri Ball representing the Greater Pine Belt Foundation, Kurt Brautigam of PRVEPA, Tomias Rhodes of Poplarville, Aileen Reyes of Columbia, Wallace, Frances Hooks of Columbia, Charlisia Moore of Lumberton, Zach Berry of Sumrall; third row, Ernie Lovell, executive director of the PRCC Development Foundation; Jay Brown of Columbia, Wesley Thompson of Purvis, Kellie Thigpen of Columbia, Bryan Ginn of Foxworth, Darius Petro of Hattiesburg and PRCC President Dr. William Lewis.
PRCC Public Relations photo
Pearl River Community College students receiving the Round Up for Education scholarships include:
Columbia Academy - George Colby Bilbo, Bailey Daniel Giles, Morgan W. Maxwell, Courtney Smith and Jacklyn Wilkes.
Columbia High School - Jay Brown, Jalon Cooper, Parker J. Dungan, Seth Justin McCain, Alonzo Pittman and Aileen Reyes.
East Marion High School - Frances Hooks, Tarish Mallard, Justin Gregory Montgomery, Adrean Mikelsia Peters, Tyrek Ruffin, Jonathan Daniel Sims and Kell` DeAnna Thigpen.
Forrest County AHS - Ty Brantley Bond, Katie Breland, Kevin Lee Broom, Lindsay P. Garner, Bailey Humphrey, Breanna Johnson, Britannie Johnson, Trannie McCardle, Kirk Michael Stringer and James Warren Terry Jr.
Home school - Emily Rachelle Broom.
Lamar Christian - John Patrick Gardner and Rachel Mossor.
Lumberton - William Daren Durham, Aryssa Fountain, Charlisia Tichelle Moore and Kyran Moore.
Northeast (Md.) High - Selena Lorden.
Oak Grove High School - Kevin Craft, Karissa Davis, Justyce Cheron Moffett, Darius Petro, and Tomias A. Rhodes.
Poplarville High School - Summer Mitchell, Brianna Smith and Billy Kyle Stringer.
Prentiss Christian - RaDonna Chyann Powell.
Purvis High School - Dustin Jameson Bullock, Reilly Bunnell, William Curtis, Brooke Sierra Evans, Katlyn Garrison, Andrew Green, Derrik A. Harvey, Briana Lauren Jameson, Rachel Johnson, Patricia Loften, Mary Kate Lott, Kacie J. McRaney, Ashlyn Pigott, Morgan E. Rummage, Keri Smith and Wesley Thompson.
Stone High School - Larry Hartfield, Leigh Anne Howe and Reagan Whitten.
Sumrall High School - Zachary David Berry, Collin Davis Carpenter, Jack Gurley, Perry Dean Hopstein III, Laurel Peighton Jordan, McKenzie Taylor Kennedy, Chance Edward Morris, Kameron Blake Ochenrider, Robert Matthew Parham, Jacob Phelps, Austin Sellers, Maddox R. Thompson and Zachary Williamson,
West Marion High School - Angela Beasley, Cordale Andrew Blocker, Phillip Christopher Forbes, Bryan Anthony Ginn, Aaron Allen Graham, Savannah Holman, Kendra Lewis, Peyton Nace, Drew Anthony Reagan, Abbie Stringer, Jonathan Wade, Jeremy Dalton Walley and Kamryne A. Watson.
Youth Challenge - Summer McRaney.