The Carson Scholars Program recently held its 2018 North Carolina Awards Banquet at the Sheraton Four Seasons in Greensboro. Members of the Coalition for American Principles (CAP) were on hand to congratulate the Chatham students who were awarded scholarships.
Founded in 1994 by world-renowned pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson and his wife, Candy, the Carson Scholars Program recognizes and rewards academic excellence in young students (grades 4-11) who also have strong humanitarian qualities. New scholars receive a $1,000 scholarship towards college, a medal and certificate, and their school receives a trophy. Each year, scholars may reapply and renew their status as a Carson Scholar provided that they maintain their academic status and a high level of volunteerism.
Of the eighteen North Carolina students who received scholarships for the first time, seven were from Chatham County. They include: Caroline Bowman, fifth grader from Perry Harrison School, Pittsboro; Vickie Loan, fourth grader from Virginia Cross Elementary School, Siler City; Annika Lowe, eighth grader from Silk Hope, Siler City; Bella Ocampo, tenth grader from Chatham School of Science & Engineering, Siler City; McKinley Rogers, eleventh grader from Jordan-Matthews High School, Siler City; Daniel Willett, eighth grader from Bonlee School, Bear Creek; and, Mary Worley, eleventh grader from Chatham Central High School, Bear Creek.
Rodney Alsup, the Carson Scholars Fund Chatham County Chapter President, gave opening remarks at the banquet. Praising the students for their accomplishments he said, “What each of you has done is impressive, and if you continue to build on the foundation you have established you will be successful. Equally important to those of us from my generation, we can rest assured that our country and our state and local communities will be in good hands with you as their future leaders.”
Working with the Carson Scholars Fund provides the opportunity for CAP to support its own legacy of improving education, promoting literacy, and rewarding high academic achievers. CAP’s initial goal was to raise $3,000 for the Carson Scholars Fund so that scholarships could be awarded to students in grades 4-11. Thanks to the generosity of CAP members and other Chatham County residents, enough money was raised to award seven scholarships to the Chatham students.
Candy Carson, Co-Founder of the Scholars Fund, was on hand to award personally the North Carolina students. She shared, “My passion lies first and foremost in fostering a better future for America’s children. We seek to prepare the next generation for leadership and success in life through reading and education.” The organization has a presence in all 50 states and has recognized more than 8,000 scholars, and nearly 3,000 scholars have been recognized multiple times. Over $5,800,000 has been paid out to colleges and universities on behalf of the Carson Scholars. More information about CAP and the Carson Scholars Fund, can be accessed at www.capnc.us.
(Left) Roger Braswell, Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient, Candy Carson, Co-Founder Carson Scholars Fund, Bella Ocampo, scholarship recipient, tenth grader from Chatham School of Science & Engineering, Siler City, Rodney Alsup, Carson Scholars Fund Chatham County Chapter President
Carson Scholar Recipients Plus
Seated CAP Members Betsy Duncan, Alan Ross, Karen Kolais, Gus Kolais
Standing CAP Members Jim Duncan, Cathy Wright