Yesterday, we announced the second honorable mention for our Annual College Book Scholarship. It was very difficult coming to this decision. My co-writer and I spent a lot of time pondering who deserved the top award. Each applicant had a special spin on their applications. Finally, we chose someone who showed spirit, confidence, and a desire to excel at whatever life throws her way.
The $500 Scholarship Winner is Jeanine D. Edaakie!
As a mother of three, a wife for 30 years and a grandmother of eight, Jeanine hopes to be an example and role model her family. She wants to show them the possibilities. She hopes that by going to school, they will see its value and a spark will ignite in them to set on a path towards education.
Here is an excerpt from her essay:
"For some people, the path of life is laid out in front with goals clear as day. For others, the path is chosen, planned and a great amount of time and energy are applied to staying on that path. Then there are those like me, no clear direction or inkling of what a goal might be. High school seemed to be the climax with the great unknown for the rest of my life. I looked around and some of my classmates were headed to college, others settled down right away, others continued the party of graduation indefinitely. My parents held true to their belief that I should make my own decisions without influence or push from them. I suppose this parenting approach worked fairly well, I was a good student, graduating with honors, an accomplished athlete, with many medals, a joiner of many clubs and activities including my favorite, the high school band. But, with all of my interests, I still did not know what to do with myself after the pomp and circumstance.
So, in a blind leap, the summer of 1983 I filled out the paperwork and enrolled in college. Since I am now in school you can deduce that I did not finish. In fact, I did not finish the first year! Why? As an adult now, I would say I was not mature enough or focused on choosing a career and becoming an adult. Then, I would have told you I felt out of place, that I didn’t know what I was doing and missed my boyfriend. You see, my whole world was changing and I was not prepared. I come from a rural poor community, with lackluster education where most of my classmates were parents themselves. The issues of poverty were evident, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, broken families, domestic violence, joblessness, etc. The university environment was an alien place with alien expectations."
We wish Jeanine all the best on her journey, and can't wait to see where she ends up!
We want to thank and encourage all of the applicants for the scholarship to apply again next year. Good luck to everyone during their 2015 Fall semester!