November 21, 2022
Pearl River Valley Electric and PineBelt Foundation representatives came to the Poplarville Campus of Pearl River Community College on Tuesday, Nov. 15 for a check presentation and reception. They were joined by PRCC administration, faculty, and staff members along with several of the 111 PRCC students who received a Round Up Scholarship for the 2022–23 school year.
Kaylee Smith lives in Dixie, attended Forrest County High School, and is working on prerequisite courses for nursing. Her family is a member of Pearl River Valley which provides them with electrical service.
“I am very thankful not only to receive this scholarship but to know that we are giving to other students who get the same opportunity as me to attend college,” said Smith. “The scholarship made a real difference for my coming here without incurring any debt this semester.”
“We are grateful to heroes like Pearl River Valley Electric who provide scholarships for our students to attend college and ultimately help build better communities,” said Dr. Adam Breerwood, President of Pearl River Community College. “Hopefully, this monetary donation will propel these students to achieving their dreams and goals.”
Since the Round Up for Education scholarship program began in November 2012, more than $2 million has been collected and deposited in an account overseen by the PineBelt Foundation. 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. Last year, there were 88 PRCC students awarded scholarships of $500 each.
“As a cooperative, we not only provide electricity but have a concern for the community,” said Pearl River Valley Electric CEO/General Manager Matthew Ware. “We look at the Round Up Program and say it doesn’t cover the entire cost. But if it gives the boost that the student needs to further their education, then we’ve done something.”
Article by Laura O’Neill
Photography by Jacob Cochran