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Meet Our What’s Ne[x]t Scholarship Winners

Posted by ginger$nap on 09.08.16

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Since high school, Marcus Inyang has been inspiring hope wherever he goes. From leading prayer circles at lunch, to starting an on-campus Bible study group, to dreams of missionary work and entrepreneurship, Marcus plans to continue bringing beauty out of broken situations through a career as a registered nurse.

This fall, Marcus, alongside his fiancée, will be attending Georgia Highlands College as part of the college’s nursing program. We caught up with Marcus to learn more about what his future holds and how receiving our scholarship will help him achieve What’s Ne[x]t.

Why did you decide on Georgia Highlands College?
After graduating from the International Baccalaureate Program in high school, my fiancée and I started college at Kennesaw State University. We had a great year and a half there, and set our eyes on pursuing a nursing degree together. We intended on staying at KSU until we met some roadblocks. Certain classes, which we needed, were full and we couldn’t get into them, so because that would slow us down, we looked elsewhere to complete our prerequisite classes. My fiancée’s mom suggested Georgia Highlands College, and the transition was seamless and very convenient. In this last semester, our experience at Georgia Highlands was really incredible. The Douglasville campus, where we attended, is close to home for both of us, and the teachers and staff were very personal.

What made you decide to pursue a degree in nursing?
I dreamt of being in medicine since I was very young, and it was always greatly encouraged by my family. For years, I thought about being a neurosurgeon, and I’m still open-minded to other realms of the medical field, but I decided after high school that nursing was a great place to start for building a foundation of medical knowledge and valuable experience caring for people.

How does a career as an RN fit with your passions in life and what do you hope to achieve with your degree?
I love people, and I think nursing should embody love in action. As an RN, my skill set will be needed across the world. I would love to meet people all over the world from different walks of life and be able to go above and beyond, not only serving them with my skill set, but also with my heart and passion.

What does it mean to you to receive the $8,000 scholarship, and how will it help you achieve What’s Ne[x]t?
This scholarship is a huge blessing and a huge surprise to me in consideration of the great work done by so many applicants. My fiancée and I have wondered how we could afford to pay for the rest of our schooling in conjunction with the costs associated with getting married and budgeting for everyday expenses. There is no doubt this scholarship will alleviate so much pressure as we continue on this path to becoming RNs.

In your video, you mentioned one day hoping to own a business that restores and remodels dilapidated buildings. Can you tell us more about this dream?
I can honestly say, I am not 100% sure how I will be able to afford and to oversee the restoration of numerous dilapidated or abandoned buildings from this stage of my life, but that’s what makes it more exciting to me. I know I have so much to learn, and I’ve heard it said, “If your dream doesn’t scare you, you’re not dreaming big enough!” By that standard, I definitely think I’m dreaming within a good range. The way I envisioned it was a small town or small city with all or many abandoned buildings that I would seek to renovate, refurbish, and literally turn into artworks with murals and all. The project would be so enormous; I would have to collaborate with builders and artists from that city and afar. My goal would be to turn what others deemed hopeless into a beautiful attraction. It won’t only be the final state that speaks loudly, but it will be the process and story behind it that speaks volumes. And it’s the same mentality I’ll have when I’m walking into a patient’s room as a nurse and taking care of them. It’s all about bringing hope and beauty out of brokenness.

Pursuing higher education is a wise investment in your future, but nonetheless a costly one. What’s your plan for managing the cost of college while in school and after you graduate?
I hope to come out of college with no debt. I can testify that it is possible. I have really strived to apply for scholarships that match my given situation, and I’ve not only thought about getting more scholarships and revenue, but also decreasing expenses and output. Georgia Highlands is very affordable, and there are no options to live on campus or anything like that, but even if there were, I would prefer to save the money. Thus, with expenses low and revenue high, debt-free college is possible. I’ve also used a budget on and off, and I would definitely advise someone to stick to a budget if they can, and really hold themselves to it. Also, throughout college, I’ve had the HOPE Scholarship, which has been very helpful, and I would suggest to any student in Georgia to work hard at receiving the HOPE Scholarship with a GPA of 3.0 or higher if they don’t already have it.

What do you think makes you one of Georgia’s Own?
As Georgia’s Own Credit Union says, they stand by the philosophy of “people helping people,” and I happen to be one of those people. Firstly, I am one of those who are being helped. My experience with this credit union has been incredible, and every interaction has been consistently helpful. My fiancée has already greatly built her credit with Georgia’s Own. And now, I am receiving this awesome scholarship, so that, in turn, I can continue my schooling and fulfill the first half of that philosophy: someone who is now helping other people.

Why did you apply for our scholarship?
In light of being a Georgia’s Own member and meeting every qualification, I figured the scholarship was worth a try, so I submitted my video application and hoped for the best – I knew that any of the scholarship amounts would have been a great help!

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
I am currently working in college as a graphic designer, cartoonist, and social media content writer for a local web design company in Douglasville called Fame Internet Marketing. Our team is like no other in Metro Atlanta, and I love what I do and who I get to work with every week.

Meet Our Other Winners

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Tell us why you chose Augusta University and what you will be studying there.
I chose Augusta University because of its unique academic programs and its recent partnership with the Medical College of Georgia. Through the seven-year Medical Scholars program I am pursuing, I will have the opportunity to achieve not only my Bachelor of Science degree in three years, but also guarantee matriculation into MCG for my Doctor of Medicine degree.

What does it mean to you to win this scholarship, and how will it help you achieve What’s Ne[x]t?
I am truly excited that my diligence in working towards my passions has been recognized, and am even more motivated to continue shaping the world. This scholarship will help to relieve some of the financial burden associated with the educational pathway I have chosen. By saving money during my undergraduate education, I will have the freedom to pursue a graduate education. In addition, I am grateful to Georgia’s Own Credit Union for this opportunity.

What makes you one of Georgia’s Own?
I characterize myself as a person who is driven by the prospect of impacting the lives of others in a positive manner and eventually making the world a better place. I believe this desire is shared by the credit union and is what makes me one of Georgia’s Own.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
One of my favorite hobbies is hiking. I often make weekend trips to the Appalachian Mountains here in Georgia and have also summited various peaks across North America.

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Tell us why you chose Liberty University and what you will be studying there.
Liberty University gives me a way to study my passion hands-on, while also being surrounded in a great environment to deepen my relationship with Christ. I will be studying film and getting my Bachelor’s in Cinematic Arts. From there, I plan to dive into the film industry and online media platform.

What does it mean to you to win this scholarship, and how will it help you achieve What’s Ne[x]t?
It’s an honor to receive such a generous gift that will help launch me into further education and my career. Because of Georgia’s Own, I will be more prepared to approach my classes and approach my independent life.

What makes you one of Georgia’s Own?
Growing up in Georgia has been a tremendous blessing. My dad always taught us the value of hard work, and when I was 10, my brother and I earned money by shoveling snow or mowing lawns. With the money we made, we set up a savings account at Georgia’s Own. Over the years, the jobs have changed, but Georgia’s Own has always been there for my savings and checking needs. Wherever my education and career take me, Georgia will always be home.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
I’m actually fairly good with the jump rope and used to do Double Dutch (two ropes). I can spin it twice around in one jump and twist the rope back and forth as I’m jumping.

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2015 Scholarship Winners

Posted by Ne[x]t on 06.09.15

Congratulations to the winners of the 2015 What’s Ne[x]t Scholarship! A total of $15,000 was given away to three deserving students to help them pursue a higher education. Open to Georgia’s Own members 25 and under, students submitted applications along with an essay describing their educational and financial goals for college and beyond and the role Georgia’s Own could play to help. From more than 200 applications received, our judges selected the following winners:

Scholarship Winners:

$8,000 Scholarship – Yash Shirsath
University of Pennsylvania

Yash

$5,000 Scholarship – Amanda Mitchell
Columbia University

Amanda Mitchell

$2,000 Scholarship – Shakori Fletcher
Elon University

Shakori
The 2016-2017 Scholarship will be announced early in 2016.


$15,000 What’s Ne[x]t Scholarship

Posted by Ne[x]t on 04.09.15

If you’ve yet to submit your application for the 2015 What’s Ne[x]t Scholarship, time is running out! The deadline to enter is May 1, 2015 and don’t forget that we’re awarding bigger prizes this year! With $15,000 to distribute, we’re giving $8,000 to the top recipient, $5,000 to second and $2,000 to the third-place winner.

Paying for college can be a daunting obstacle, but this scholarship is an awesome opportunity to put you on track to covering those costs! To find out more info on the requirements, check out the video below. To get started on your application click here!


2014 Scholarship Winners!

Posted by Ne[x]t on 08.04.14

Congratulations to our 2014 Scholarship recipients and thanks to all who submitted an application.  Winners were selected based on their academic performance, community involvement, and money-management skills. Georgia’s Own awarded a total of $15,000 in college scholarships to be used in the 2014-2015 academic year.

Scholarship Winners:

$5,000 – Danielle Purvis
Emory University

$3,000 – Emily Dutton
University of Georgia

$2,000 – Harrison Grier
University of Chicago

$1,000 – Jonathan Bearden
University of North Georgia

$1,000 – Valencia Bercier
Georgia Perimeter College

$1,000 – Ashton Seibel
University of Georgia

$1,000 – Cyana Tripplet
Georgia Gwinnett College

$1,000 – Rebecca Webb
University of Georgia

“At Georgia’s Own Credit Union, we recognize the significance of creating real opportunities for our young adult members. In addition to helping them realize their financial goals through our array of products and services designed to fit their needs and lifestyle, our scholarship program is yet another way we are empowering today’s youth to own their future.”

Amy Eagan
VP of Marketing & Sales of Georgia’s Own Credit Union


$15,000 Scholarship from Georgia's Own

Posted by Ne[x]t on 01.27.14

Georgia’s Own Credit Union’s $15,000 Scholarship Giveaway!

It’s that time of year again! That’s right, we’re giving away $15,000 in scholarships to EIGHT lucky winners in 2014. At Georgia’s Own Credit Union, we believe in helping our members achieve their goals, and we are especially proud to help you, our young adult members, who are just starting out financially. That’s why Georgia’s Own is honored to award eight scholarships to students who epitomize the Credit Union’s “People Helping People” philosophy.

The top recipient will receive a $5000 scholarship for the 2014-2015 academic year. We will also be awarding a $3000 and $2000 scholarship to second and third-place recipients, respectively. Additionally, we will award five deserving runner-ups $1000 each. Georgia’s Own Credit Union scholarships are awarded to students who demonstrate good financial habits, a commitment to their community and a commendable academic record.

Guidelines for Scholarship Consideration:

  1. The applicant must be a Georgia’s Own Credit Union i[x]member, 25 years of age or younger
  2. The applicant must be enrolled or anticipate enrollment in 2014/2015, in an accredited institution.
  3. The applicant must write a 500-word essay, outlining goals, aspirations, college and career plans. The essay should also include ways in which the applicant manages his or her finances effectively.
  4. The applicant must be attending or have graduated from an accredited high school and provide transcripts for current and previous years.
  5. Written recommendations from two present or former instructors and/or employers, dated within the last three months, are required.
  6. An outline of community and/or extracurricular involvement, including dates of involvement, must be included with the essay.
  7. Applicants that meet all of the above requirements will be eligible for scholarship entry.

(1st Place Recipient: $5000 College Scholarship; 2nd Place Recipient: $3000 College Scholarship; 3rd Place Recipient: $2000 College Scholarship, Five (5) Runner-ups: $1000 each)

All applications should be postmarked by May 23, 2014 and sent to:
Georgia’s Own Scholarship Fund
Attn: Marketing
P.O. Box 105205
Atlanta, GA 30348

Officers, Directors, Supervisory Committee Members, Employees, Vendors, Agents, Successors and Assignments of Georgia’s Own Credit Union and immediate family members (defined as spouse, mother, father, in-laws, grandmother, grandfather, brother, sister, children, and grandchildren) are not eligible to win above-mentioned scholarships. Entries will be judged by a third-party panel of experts.

Download the application here


2013 Scholarship Winners!

Posted by Ne[x]t on 08.08.13

Congratulations to our 2013 Scholarship recipients and thanks to all who submitted an application.  The scholarships were awarded by our Executive Scholarship Committee consisting of Jeff Dauler (Q100’s The Bert Show), Brandi Burton (Atlanta Hawks), Bill McLellan (L.E.A.D.), Michelle Martin (Junior Achievement of Georgia), Jason Gorman (680 The Fan), Jennifer Bodnar (Georgia State University Office of Civic Engagement) and Brian Jordan (Brian Jordan Foundation).

Scholarship Winners:

Alena Antonowich

Alena Antonowich

$5,000 – Alena Antonowich (Washington University in St. Louis)

$3,000 – Erin Hennessey (Georgia State University)

$2,000 – Michelle Borg (University of Georgia)

$1,000 – Jack “Tiger” Brown, III (Claremont McKenna College)

$1,000 – John Cowart (Georgia College and State University)

$1,000 – Gavin Greif (University of North Georgia)

$1,000 – Andrew Jarnagin (University of Georgia)

$1,000 – Christopher Lawhorne (University of Texas, El Paso)

 

Quotes from our winners…

Michelle Borg

Michelle Borg

I just want to thank Georgia’s Own for this opportunity; I am so grateful for their help in attaining my goal of a college education. – Alena Antonowich

 

“It simply means having the opportunity to achieve my goals.  It provides encouragement in the sense that it takes a little pressure off of the financial beating college can sometimes bring and allows me to focus solely on my studies.” – Michelle Borg

 

 

 


$15,000 Scholarship from Georgia's Own

Posted by Ne[x]t on 03.07.13

It’s that time of year again! That’s right, we’re giving away $15,000 in scholarships to EIGHT lucky winners in 2013. At Georgia’s Own Credit Union, we believe in helping our members achieve their goals, and we are especially proud to help you, our young adult members, who are just starting out financially. That’s why Georgia’s Own is honored to award eight scholarships to students who epitomize the Credit Union’s “People Helping People” philosophy.

The top recipient will receive a $5,000 scholarship for the 2013-2014 academic year. We will also be awarding a $3000 and $2000 scholarship to second and third-place recipients, respectively. Additionally, we will award five deserving runner-ups $1,000 each. Georgia’s Own Credit Union scholarships are awarded to students who demonstrate good financial habits, a commitment to their community and a commendable academic record.

Guidelines for Scholarship Consideration:

  1. The applicant must be a Georgia’s Own Credit Union i[x]member, 25 years of age or younger
  2. The applicant must be enrolled or anticipate enrollment in 2013/2014, in an accredited institution.
  3. The applicant must write a 500-word essay, outlining goals, aspirations, college and career plans. The essay should also include ways in which the applicant manages his or her finances effectively.
  4. The applicant must be attending or have graduated from an accredited high school and provide transcripts for current and previous years.
  5. Written recommendations from two present or former instructors and/or employers, dated within the last three months, are required.
  6. An outline of community and/or extracurricular involvement, including dates of involvement, must be included with the essay.
  7. Applicants that meet all of the above requirements will be eligible for scholarship entry.

(1st Place Recipient: $5,000 College Scholarship; 2nd Place Recipient: $3,000 College Scholarship; 3rd Place Recipient: $2,000 College Scholarship, Five (5) Runner-ups: $1,000 each)

All applications should be postmarked by May 31, 2013 and sent to:
Georgia’s Own Scholarship Fund
Attn: Marketing
P.O. Box 105205
Atlanta, GA 30348

Officers, Directors, Supervisory Committee Members, Employees, Vendors, Agents, Successors and Assignments of Georgia’s Own Credit Union and immediate family members (defined as spouse, mother, father, in-laws, grandmother, grandfather, brother, sister, children, and grandchildren) are not eligible to win above-mentioned scholarships. Entries will be judged by a third-party panel of experts.

Download the application here


2012 Scholarship Winners

Posted by Ne[x]t on 08.09.12

Congratulations to our 2012 Georgia’s Own Scholarship winners. The first place award was a $5,000 scholarship presented to Manasa Bhatta of Johns Creek. Jennifer Dininger of Lawrenceville and Tiffany Francis of Lilburn won $3,000 and $2,000, respectively. In addition to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place awards, Georgia’s Own also awarded five exceptional students, Madison Wilhelm, Julia Hellman, Euteevia Scott, Daryl Allen and Tyler Willingham, with $1,000 each.

2012 Georgia’s Own Scholarship Winners
1st ($5,000) –  Manasa Bhatta, Emory University
2nd ($3,000 )–  Jennifer Dininger, Virginia Intermont College
3rd ($2,000)  –  Tiffany Francis, Agnes Scott College

Runners-Up ($1,000)
Madison Wilhelm, Georgia Southern University
Julia Hellman, University of Georgia
Euteevia Scott, Clayton State University
Daryl Allen, Alabama A&M University
Tyler Willingham, Mississippi State University

 


Maximizing Your Financial Aid

Posted by Ne[x]t on 06.04.12

Congratulations. You’ve done it!  You were accepted into college and begin in the fall.  Now comes the fun stuff: How will you pay for school?  Scholarships, grants, savings and loans are all great options for you, but maybe that scholarship you were hoping for fell through.  There is no denying that college is expensive and without scholarships or assistance from your parents.  The good thing for you however, is there are other options available such as student loans.  Millions of students rely on student loans to pay for some or all of college, so you won’t be alone.
When searching for financial assistance, you should always start with scholarships and grants, which cost you nothing and do not have to be repaid (Free money!).   These can be in the form of need-based (those who can’t afford to go to college through their family’s financial means alone), merit-based (awarded because of a specific achievement, talent, skill or characteristic), or gift-aid. Check with your guidance counselor, ask the schools you want to attend and even do a little internet research on your own to find out how to apply.  Most likely any money received through scholarships and grants will not be enough to fully fund your education.  However, the more free money you receive, the less you have to pay back later. 
Once you have minimized how much you’ll have to borrow through scholarships, grants, and savings, you can begin applying for student loans.  It’s important to know that there are two different types of student loans: Federal (those backed by the federal government) and Private (ones by credit unions, banks and other private lenders).  Federal loans have lower fixed interest rates and are more easily available.  A fixed interest rate means that the rate at which you are quoted will not change throughout the life of the loan.  In contrast, interest rates on private loans vary, depending on the lender and the borrower’s credit rating.
The first thing you should do when applying for Federal financial aid is complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  This application automatically applies you for monies awarded from most federal and state agencies and will be processed and sent to the institutions you list on the form.  If you are eligible for loans, your school will provide you with an Award Letter explaining the types of aid you are eligible to receive.  If the Financial Aid Office has determined you need a loan, you will need to contact the appropriate parties to apply. 
Once you have thoroughly exhausted all sources of free and low-cost financial aid, you might find you still have a need of financial assistance.  Private student loans are meant to fill this gap that is left between the Cost of Attendance (COA) and the Federal loans/aid you’ve received. Private loans are not offered through the federal government, so it’s important to look for a loan program from an institution you trust, such as Georgia’s Own Credit Union. These loans are in the name of the student but often require a co-signer and are not guaranteed or subsidized by the government. Instead, they are based on the credit score of the student and/or the credit score of any co-signer they have on the loan.  They also allow flexible repayment options so that you will have lower initial payments after graduation.  More information on Georgia’s Own student lending program can be found at http://georgiasown.studentchoice.org.
 
There are numerous options and places to get information these days.  Get smart, plan ahead and put your plan into action.  While the process of funding your continuing education may seem daunting, planning carefully and researching all of your options can save you thousands!  Remember, college is an investment, not an expense.


$15,000 Scholarship from Georgia's Own

Posted by Ne[x]t on 02.27.12

Georgia’s Own Credit Union’s $15,000 Scholarship Giveaway!

It’s that time of year again! That’s right, we’re giving away $15,000 in scholarships to EIGHT lucky winners in 2012. At Georgia’s Own Credit Union, we believe in helping our members achieve their goals, and we are especially proud to help you, our young adult members, who are just starting out financially. That’s why Georgia’s Own is honored to award eight scholarships to students who epitomize the Credit Union’s “People Helping People” philosophy.

The top recipient will receive a $5000 scholarship for the 2012-2013 academic year. We will also be awarding a $3000 and $2000 scholarship to second and third-place recipients, respectively. Additionally, we will award five deserving runner-ups $1000 each. Georgia’s Own Credit Union scholarships are awarded to students who demonstrate good financial habits, a commitment to their community and a commendable academic record.

Guidelines for Scholarship Consideration:

  1. The applicant must be a Georgia’s Own Credit Union i[x]member, 25 years of age or younger
  2. The applicant must be enrolled or anticipate enrollment in 2012/2013, in an accredited institution.
  3. The applicant must write a 500-word essay, outlining goals, aspirations, college and career plans. The essay should also include ways in which the applicant manages his or her finances effectively.
  4. The applicant must be attending or have graduated from an accredited high school and provide transcripts for current and previous years.
  5. Written recommendations from two present or former instructors and/or employers, dated within the last three months, are required.
  6. An outline of community and/or extracurricular involvement, including dates of involvement, must be included with the essay.
  7. Applicants that meet all of the above requirements will be eligible for scholarship entry.

(1st Place Recipient: $5000 College Scholarship; 2nd Place Recipient: $3000 College Scholarship; 3rd Place Recipient: $2000 College Scholarship, Five (5) Runners-up: $1000 each)

All applications should be postmarked by July 13th and sent to:
Georgia’s Own Scholarship Fund
Attn: Marketing
P.O. Box 105205
Atlanta, GA 30348

Officers, Directors, Supervisory Committee Members, Employees, Vendors, Agents, Successors and Assignments of Georgia’s Own Credit Union and immediate family members (defined as spouse, mother, father, in-laws, grandmother, grandfather, brother, sister, children, and grandchildren) are not eligible to win above-mentioned scholarships. Entries will be judged by a third-party panel of experts.

Download the application here!







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