Douglass Community Services offering scholarship for alternative education path

Published: Mar. 14, 2023 at 4:13 AM CDT
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HANNIBAL (WGEM) - Douglass Community Services is offering a $500 scholarship for Hannibal or Palmyra students who opt not to go to a four year college or university.

CEO Stephanie Cooper said it’s for those looking to enter the workforce, get a certification or license like a CDL, or cover the cost of credits at a community college. Cooper said they noticed there are not a lot of scholarships available to assist students taking that route.

“We are seeing many students going out into the workforce and getting certificate programs, becoming apprentices, and making just as much if not more than a college graduate is making and so we just felt as if these students needed attention and they needed to have equal opportunity,” Cooper said.

Local economic experts said its great scholarships like these are available, as they can help grow the local workforce.

Hannibal Regional Economic Development Council Entrepreneurship Specialist Maria Kuhns said technical industries such as machinery, healthcare, retail and food service benefit from students taking those paths. She said this is useful to help fill the shortage in those areas.

“It is really great for us to see that we can grow these students while they’re remaining here in the community and build our workforce,” she said. “We know that the rural population is aging and so having more opportunities for students to realize the benefit of staying in Marion and Ralls County is huge.”

She hopes this can lead to similar scholarships being offered to more students.

Cooper said students going into two-year institutions, certification programs, and the workforce are eligible for the scholarship. Applicants must be graduating in the spring or the mid-year in December to be eligible.

The deadline to apply for the scholarship is April 3. You can fill it out online or you can call Douglass Community Services at (573) 221-3892 and ask to speak with Stephanie Cooper or Stacey Nicholas to get a physical copy or more information. You can also talk to your counselor as well to get information on the application.

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