The new Mississippi Gulf Coast Emerging Scholars program was unveiled on Nov. 1 during a special event at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Hospitality Resort Management Center in Biloxi.
The Mississippi Gulf Coast Emerging Scholars Partnership Appreciation Luncheon for high school principals and counselors was the perfect opportunity to introduce this innovative program to those who have direct contact with high school students in MGCCC’s four-county district comprising George, Harrison, Jackson, and Stone counties. This program brings together MGCCC Phi Theta Kappa and Honors College advisers with local high school counselors, principals, parents, students, and teachers to prepare high school and college students to reach their full potential, receive scholarships and become academic champions.
“MGCCC already does a lot for students, but we want to do even more,” said Dr. Phil Bonfanti, executive vice president of Student Services and Enrollment Management. “This past spring, MGCCC graduates were awarded $3.2 million in transfer scholarships. That equates to more than $12,700 each to complete the remaining two years of college toward a bachelor’s degree. These same students also received a variety of scholarships at MGCCC, with most students paying little or no tuition for their two years at Gulf Coast.”
The Emerging Scholars programs will not only help school districts prepare students for opportunities to succeed through scholarships but will provide a clearinghouse of scholarships available to students through MGCCC and for transfer after they graduate with an associate degree.
“We want to help students reach their full potential,” Bonfanti said. “This program focuses on the full power of our resources and expertise into one program, providing easy access for students to receive the support they need to get there. With help from our high school partners, we can ensure students are prepared to meet the challenges of higher education successfully.”
Partnership schools will receive display banners with scholarship winners from their school listed on them. Each year, high schools will be recognized for helping create outstanding scholars in the program.
Other events are planned through the program that will focus on students. The Presidential Reception for Emerging Coast Scholars will highlight the new Mississippi Gulf Coast Emerging Scholars Partnership and will give students and future MGCCC supporters information about scholarships and honors programs. The event will be held on Nov. 21, beginning at 5:30 p.m., at the Hospitality Resort Management Center. To register, visit mgccc.edu/emerging-scholars.
In addition, a series of Scholarship Workshops will be held in February 2020 that will provide students, parents and counselors a playbook full of vital information to aid in student scholarship opportunities and preparation. The workshops will also cover resume creation, public speaking, scholarship and essay writing, and other relevant skills. Other events planned during the spring semester include Junior Scholars Draft and Scholars Signing Day. Additional information and registration about these events will be provided at mgccc.edu/emerging-scholars.