5 Students at Fannin County Middle School are already planning for college, thanks to the REACH (Realizing Educational Achievement Can Happen) Scholarship, which is given to 8th Graders. The students were presented with the $10,000 private-state scholarships on September 30 at Fannin County Middle School.
The process of choosing students to give the REACH scholarship begins with the school system applying to be apart of the REACH scholarship. The first year REACH scholarship will fund the complete amount of scholarships. In the subsequent years, the school system will pay a small amount toward the scholarship. The next step is to pick students to give the scholarship to. The students must have academic promise and keep a 2.5 grade point average through high school, have good conduct, and not be convicted of any crimes until college graduation. They must also qualify for free or reduced lunch.
Students then submit applications and has interviews with a committee made up of community members, who picks the 5 recipients of the REACH scholarship. The committee in Fannin County was Fannin County High School Principal Erik Cioffi, John and Jill Dickenson, Stacy Lewis of United Community Bank, and Dana Chastain of the Clerk of Courts Office.
Part of the REACH program also includes twice a month mentoring sessions and working with an academic coach, who will monitor the student’s academic progress through high school.
Once the students are given the Scholarship students will be unable to use the money until college. Each semester, students will get $2,500 which can be used for tuition or other college related expenses such as room and board. The scholarship can be used at any public or private college that accepts the HOPE scholarship. Many colleges in the state are matching the REACH scholarship like: Emmanual College, Shorter University, Toccoa Falls College, and Spelman College. Some colleges are even double matching the REACH scholarship like: Young Harris College, Piedmont College, Reinhardt University, Berry College, Brenau University, and Convenant College among others. Students will still be able to get the HOPE scholarship in addition to the REACH scholarship.
The students chosen for Fannin County to receive the scholarship are
Harley Cox, Tasia Galloway, Joey Long, Chastity Seabolt, and Alexis Ware.