As eight Cobb middle school students sat poised and ready to sign their names to a future $10,000 scholarship opportunity, their families watched on with smiles. There was a twinkle of pride in their eyes. Many snapped photos. Tears streamed down the face of at least one mom.
The future Cobb graduates were selected for the opportunity to achieve a $10,000 scholarship upon high school graduation. Governor Nathan Deal launched REACH Georgia in 2012 as a statewide needs-based mentorship and scholarship program. It provides academically promising students who have a demonstrated financial need with the academic, social, and financial support to help make their dreams of post-secondary education a reality. The program supports students throughout the entire state.
The official signing ceremony was recently held at the Cobb County School District office to recognize the following students:
- Jessie Acquah, Lindley Middle School
- William Gallman, Hightower Trail Middle School
- Jonathan King, Cooper Middle School
- Andy Lucas, Lindley Middle School
- Mia Martin, Palmer Middle School
- Zuriel Martinez-Galeno, Lindley Middle School
- Jayson Olakanye, Pine Mountain Middle School
- Stevenson Vallere, Smitha Middle School
At the signing ceremony, each eighth-grade student, their families, and school district employees entered into a contract to support the student’s efforts to maintain a 2.5 HOPE GPA or higher, continue to have good behavior and school attendance and to meet with a volunteer mentor and academic coach throughout high school.
In addition to their families, students were joined by other members of the school community invested in their success as students, including their school principals, Superintendent Chris Ragsdale, and members of the Cobb Schools Foundation.
“We are thrilled to be celebrating with such bright students. Through the REACH GA Program and Georgia Student Finance Commission, we are dedicated to helping students access higher education by providing financial aid options and programs to make college more affordable,” shared Lynne Riley, President of Student Finance Commission.
The REACH Georgia program allots eight scholarship opportunities for Cobb students per year. The success of the program depends on community support. For each student, the Cobb Schools Foundation must raise $4,000, and REACH Georgia will match it by 2.5 times for a total scholarship worth $10,000.
“North Cobb Rotary supports the Cobb Schools Foundation’s REACH program and invests in our community in many ways. We have wonderful members who really rise to the calling of service. We are happy to support this program. It’s kind of a no-brainer because our $4,000 donation instantly becomes worth $10,000,” shared Naceo Denney, North Cobb Rotary President.
The Cobb Schools Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Cobb County School District with the mission of, together, taking student success to new heights.