EHS Class of ‘57 Scholarship to leave lasting mark on school district

Published 1:51 am Thursday, December 21, 2017

The timing couldn’t have been better for members of the Elizabethton High School Graduation Class of 1957.

Representatives of the class attended December’s City Board of Education meeting and passed along their gift, a scholarship fund to benefit students at Elizabethton High School, to be used at the school and be recognized by the Board.

Greg Bowers, who spoke to officials Tuesday evening, added the scholarship has been in existence for over 20 years and was privately provided by members of the class.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“Guidance Counselor Melanie Hartley and others at (EHS) have been assisting class members in awarding the scholarship for some time,” Bowers told the Board. “Several members of the class, recognizing the uncertainty of life, also recognized in order for the scholarship to remain viable, it would need to be officially recognized by this Board, and that control disbursements would need to be transferred to the high school and its bookkeeper.”

Over the course of the scholarship’s existence, Class of ‘57 members have provided funds, no less than $500, to a minimum of four incoming seniors at EHS based solely on financial need.

According to information provided by Bowers, funds are used to assist with ACT expense, dual-enrollment, prom and other graduation expenses.

Bowers added the hope of the scholarship, which is presented anonymously to students, from members is that it encourages students to rise above tough circumstances and that it will “foster the students’ pursuit of excellence in academic skills, citizenship, leadership and those individual qualities which will lead to successful and rewarding futures.”

With the scholarship being recognized by the school district, a scholarship committee will be put in place, consisting of EHS Principal Josh Boatman, EHS guidance counselors and Class of ‘57 members to provide necessary input to choose recipients in a non-discriminatory way.

Following the conclusion of the presentation, BOE members commended the efforts of the group while Vice-Chair Grover May thanked Bowers and the graduates for their efforts of giving back to the school district.

With the Class of ‘57 no strangers to giving back, ECS Director of Schools Dr. Corey Gardenhour also thanked the continual efforts of the former Cyclones.

“We’d like to thank each member of the class for the work in giving back to the future generation of Cyclones,” he said. “This is such a tremendous gift that can impact the lives of our students.”

Residents also have an opportunity to contribute to the scholarship fund.

“It is the hope of the class that other members of our extended community will recognize the need for, and importance of, the scholarship that they created decades ago, and would want to contribute to the fund to make this a perpetuating fund where only the interest generated on the underlying investment will be disbursed each year,” Bowers said.

Dr. Gardenhour added the citizens wanting to assist with the fund can contact EHS for more details.