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Scholarship donation to aid Victoria College early college students

By Victoria Advocate
Aug. 24, 2013 at 3:24 a.m.

Shown with the donation check, from left: Sherri Hathaway, with VISD's Liberty Academy; Dr. Tom Butler, Victoria College president; Babette Lowe, Victoria College dean  of Academic Foundations and Student Success; and Melissa Robinson, Pre-College Programs and Recruitment director.

For high school students taking college courses at Victoria school district's Liberty Academy, receiving textbooks just got a little easier this year.

The Karl E. "Ollie" Olson Scholarship Fund donated $1,500 to the Victoria College Foundation, which in turn goes to Liberty Academy.

This money is earmarked for students enrolled in Victoria College's early college high school to purchase textbooks.

"The early college high school is a huge success," said Sherri Hathaway of Liberty Academy. "We were trying to decide how to raise funds to pay for the increased cost of textbooks."

Babette Lowe, dean of Academic Foundations and Student Success at Victoria College, said she wanted to use some of the money in the Olson scholarship fund, named for her father, to help the early college students.

"The kids are just wonderful," Lowe said. "I have known many of these students since the early college high school began years ago. Many of them are working on an associate degree alongside their high school diploma."

She said the students don't take part in extracurricular activities such as sports and drill teams but rather spend that after-school time studying, sometimes staying as late as 7 p.m.

"When I saw how many textbooks they would need, I thought I could help," Lowe said. "I feel so passionate about the future of these students."

The first class is expected to graduate in May 2015.

"Victoria College and VISD have always had a strong relationship and a beneficial partnership," Lowe said.

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