Pictured are High Point University’s 2019 Say Yes and First Generation Scholars, all of whom hail from local high schools. From left to right are Lucero Ruiz-DeLeon, Lisbeth Ramirez, Lauren Riley, Shamar VanHook and Tyrease McBride.
HIGH POINT, N.C., May 16, 2019 – Five Triad high school students were joined with their families at High Point University today for a signing-day ceremony to celebrate their commitment to continuing academic success.
HPU awards five Say Yes Scholarships annually, all of which were presented to Guilford County Schools graduating seniors. This year, three recipients are First Generation Scholars. This year’s recipients are:
Lucero Ruiz-DeLeon — The Middle College at UNCG
Tyrease McBride — T. Wingate Andrews High School
Lisbeth Ramirez — High Point Central High School
Lauren Riley — High Point Central High School
Shamar VanHook — Dudley High School
Guilford County commissioners, representatives for Say Yes Guilford, Guilford County Schools staff members and community members filled the event today to celebrate the achievements of these soon-to-be high school graduates and freshmen at HPU.
“Today is a day that we are honoring perseverance,” said the Rev. Dr. Joe Blosser, Robert G. Culp director of service learning at HPU. “We are honoring people today who have had faith in the face of adversity. People who have pushed onward when others have given up. When these five amazing young people showed up to their Say Yes/First Generation Scholarship interview, they were banging on the door, and if we didn’t answer, they were going to knock it down because every single one of them knew that HPU was the place they needed to be.”
In addition to joining a university focused on academic and professional excellence, the Say Yes Scholarship recipients are also enrolled in HPU’s Bonner Leader program. The national program funds students to serve as volunteer coordinators at local nonprofit organizations. In these roles, students are able to strengthen the High Point community while also gaining valuable skills.
Douglas McCollum, a rising senior and Bonner Leader at HPU, delivered the keynote address and encouraged each Say Yes Scholar to find their voice and remain involved in their community.
“As you walk onto campus and work in the community as Bonners and as representatives for your own homes and communities, find your voice and make this space work for you,” said McCollum. “When you arrive at HPU, take classes that are outside your major and get to know everybody well.”
Lisa Hawley is an area business owner and operates the ‘Feeding Lisa’s Kids’ program in the city of High Point. She has known scholarship recipient Tyrease McBride since he was young, and McBride has volunteered for her program.
“I’m so proud of him, and I’m so happy that I’ve gotten to be part of his life since he was eight years old,” said Hawley. “He’s always been so responsible, and he achieved this all by himself.”
“Today is unbelievable,” said McBride. “I’m glad to be at HPU to start my dreams and begin a great career. I want to be the best person that I can be, and I feel that HPU can make me into that person.”
About the recipients: