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Victoria College students thank donors for scholarships, dedication

By Carolina Astrain
May 22, 2013 at 12:22 a.m.
Updated May 23, 2013 at 12:23 a.m.

Kristen Kelly

Essay contest winners

• Kristen Kelly, 20, of Thomaston - Kelly said she plans to graduate with an associate in nursing and to continue her education at a four-year university.

Ashley Mozisek, 18, of Victoria - Mozisek had originally planned to pursue a nursing degree but switch majors after realizing writing is her true passion. She is a graduate of Victoria East High School.

• Crystal Peters, 26, of Ganado - Peters graduated with a bachelor's degree in communications, but decided to return to school at Victoria College to work toward her medical field dreams. She credited the services provided at the college's tutoring center for her success thus far.

The Advocate plans to publish essays from 10 scholarship applicants starting on Sunday's Viewpoints page.

Tears streamed down Kristen Kelly's face when she opened the Victoria College letter in her Thomaston home near Cuero.

The 20-year-old nursing school student and two other VC students were awarded $1,000 scholarships Wednesday morning after placing in the top three of the college's "What's Your Story?" essay contest.

"I'm going to remember the generosity from these people for the rest of my life," Kelly said. "It's something I'm going to consider doing once I start my career in nursing."

Victoria College Foundation donors announced that along with these three $1,000 scholarships, they've raised $340,000 for scholarships for the 2013-14 academic year.

"It's such an honor to be surrounded by our donors who truly value education," said Amy Mundy, executive director of the VC Foundation.

During his introduction of the first essay contest winner, newly retired history professor emeritus, Michael Hummel opened with a rags-to-riches anecdote by Horatio Alger Jr., a popular novelist from the late 1880s.

The story was about a poor man who saved the life of his supervisor's son, who after discovering his valiant efforts, promotes him within the company.

"Now, although she didn't knock anybody's son out of the way of a falling building," Hummel said. "She's managed to succeed the old-fashioned way and has a real story to tell."

Kelly, wearing a soft yellow cardigan over a white blouse, began to read from her scholarship essay.

"VC had all the answers when I needed them," Kelly said. "I was guided by the light VC provided."

Kelly said she plans to pursue her associate degree in nursing and then hopes to continue her education at a university.

"I would have been lost if there had been no LVN program to consider," Kelly said. "I am perpetually grateful."

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