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College Celebrates Success of Community Scholarship Program and Students

PADUCAH, KY (February 24, 2017) - Last month, West Kentucky Community and Technical College representatives traveled to Florida to be recognized nationally for the Community Scholarship Program (CSP). The college was selected as one of ten national finalist for the 2017 Bellwether Awards from the Community College Future Assembly, in the Planning, Governance & Finance (PGF) category.
 
On Friday, WKCTC officials thanked the supporters of the scholarship program and celebrated the success of the CSP students during a luncheon at the Emerging Technology Center.
 
The Community Scholarship Program was launched in 2010 with one simple goal - to increase the number of high school students who transition to college by providing a scholarship to all Paducah/McCracken County graduates. CSP was spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Paducah as a public-private partnership with initial investments from city and county government, as well as local businesses and organizations. The intent was to provide a scholarship to help students attain a two-year degree or industry certification from WKCTC. No state or federal funding is associated with this program.
 
The scholarship provides funding for up to 60 credit hours toward a technical certification and/or an associate degree at WKCTC. The scholarship pays the balance of tuition not paid by federal or state aid and other scholarships received. Students from all Paducah and McCracken County public and private high schools and home-schooled students are eligible to receive funding.
 
Candidates must enroll in the CSP by Oct. 1 of their high school freshman year and meet the established high school performance guidelines. WKCTC has invested heavily in several services to support the CSP, including mentoring programs, college coaching and first year experience courses.
 
“Many of you have already earned certificates in welding, the electrical program, HVAC, collision repair, IT and nurse’s aide, and several of you are already working in those areas,” Dr. Lisa Stephenson, WKCTC’s K-12 Partnerships and CSP director, told the more than 50 students in the audience Friday. “These certificates provide the stepping stones to a degree and have prepared you for the workforce, and you have achieved something that no one can ever take away from you.”
 
Lee Emmons, WKCTC’s vice president of advancement, thanked the program’s school partners - McCracken County High School, Paducah Tilghman High School, Community Christian Academy and St. Mary’s High School.
 
“Of course, this program would not be possible without the funding that provides for the scholarship,” Emmons added, as she and WKCTC President Anton Reece recognized the scholarship charter donors Bacon Farmer and Workman Engineering and Testing, Inc., Community Financial Services Bank, Paducah Bank, Paducah and Railway, Paducah Junior College, Inc., Paducah Power Systems, the Rotary Club of Paducah, Edward Jones Investments, Computer Services Inc., the City of Paducah, the late William Usher and McCracken County Fiscal Court.