Grady EMC seeks local students eligible for $1K scholarships

Published 1:34 am Friday, January 4, 2013

Special to The Post-Searchlight

According to the College Board, the average cost of attending a public university for the 2011-2012 school year was $21,447. Attending a private college will cost quite a bit more at $42,224.

With that in mind, and the knowledge that students and families face significant financial pressures, Grady EMC is currently accepting applications for the Walter Harrison Scholarship, a program sponsored by Georgia’s 42 electric cooperatives.

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The $1,000 scholarship can be applied to academic expenses at any accredited two- or four-year university, college or vocational-technical institute in Georgia.

In 2013, Walter Harrison Scholarships will be awarded to seven students who demonstrate exceptional academic performance. Factors for consideration include grade point average, SAT scores, academic standing, scholastic honors, and financial need. A scholarship committee comprised of EMC directors and managers selects students who exceed in these areas and who struggle with college expenses.

Students who apply for the scholarship must be accepted or enrolled in an accredited undergraduate degree program. They also must complete an application and write an biographical sketch which provides a preview of his or her future plans.

The Scholarship is partially funded through a Silent Auction held each year at Georgia EMC’s Annual Meeting. The 42 electric co-ops throughout Georgia donate unique items representative of every region of the state. Last year’s Auction raised more than $9,000 which went to help seven deserving students pursue their academic goals.

Created in 1985 by the board of directors of Georgia EMC, the Scholarship pays tribute to the late Walter Harrison, a pioneer in the rural electricity movement and a leader at local, state and national levels in the electric cooperative program.

Since 1985, Georgia’s electric cooperatives have awarded more than $147,000 to students via the Walter Harrison Scholarship program.

Those students interested in applying for the scholarship should contact their guidance department counselors at their respective schools to receive an application packet. In addition to the application form applicants will need to submit an autobiography, school transcripts, grade point average, SAT scores, academic standing, scholastic honors, letters of recommendation and proof of enrollment or an acceptance letter. Completed applications are due to Grady EMC no later than Friday, Feb. 1, 2013. The winners will be announced by Georgia Electric Membership Corporation on or before April 1, 2013.

Grady EMC, based in Cairo, is a member-owned cooperative providing electricity and related services to approximately 18,000 members in Decatur, Grady and Thomas counties.

Georgia EMC is the statewide trade association representing the state’s 42 EMCs, Oglethorpe Power Corp., Georgia Transmission Corp. and Georgia System Operations Corp. Collectively, Georgia’s customer-owned EMCs provide electricity and related services to more than four million people, half of Georgia’s population, across 73 percent of the state’s land area.