“My scholarship is very encouraging. It ensures that I’m in the right place in my life,” said Melinda E., a student at Chandler Gilbert Community College (CGCC), who is well on her way to becoming a Diagnostic Medical Sonographer.
Since her husband passed away, going to school has given Melinda direction in her life as she cares for her children. It has not been easy. Melinda, who dropped out of high school at 17, and as a mother obtained her GED, looks at her education as a way to care for her children and as an investment in not only her own life, but theirs as well. “Many changes have taken place in spite of our hurt,” she said. “To receive a scholarship for this unexpected journey I’m on as a single parent, lets me check off a list of concerns I have as to how and what I need to do, to move ahead.”
Melinda’s grades reflect her determination and she’s maintaining a 90% and above in her classes, all while taking care of her children and volunteering at the church where her husband was the senior pastor. “We don’t have family that can support us, but our church has been our family during this difficult time,” she said. In addition to her courses, Melinda has taken on many responsibilities at her church and oversees women’s ministries, leads and organizes events and has been asked to teach at a statewide conference for women.
Melinda feels the challenges of facing her unexpected journey have been great. Her home has changed, their hearts are empty and having to redefine their lives has been overwhelming. “To have some financial relief through a scholarship, is hope for the direction I have stepped into. It gives me the opportunity to be successful, allows time for tutoring and provides resources for purchasing needed supplies.” She continued, “This assistance has been a steppingstone to move forward. I’m forever grateful and appreciative of the donors willing to invest in my future and family.”