To the Southern Tennessee Ladies’ Society, five years of hard work and dedication has paid off. The organization has awarded scholarships to seven middle Tennessee students totaling $24,000.
Grundy County High School senior Joseph “Cole” Johnson is one of the recipients. Johnson is an honor student and member of the Grundy County Jackets baseball team. In his spare time he is head umpire at the Tracy City baseball field.
He plans to attend Tennessee Tech to pursue a degree in Chemical Engineering. When asked what his greatest accomplishment was the last four years of high school, Cole replied, “To do what’s right all the time, to give 100%.”
The guest speaker was Dr. MaryLou Apple, president of Motlow College. She reminded the recipients that they are the best of the best. “We are at a crossroads in Tennessee regarding education and the students here are at the top but we have a lot of students that do not go further than high school to obtain any skills or further their education.”
Dr Apple brought her special bag of tools and passed them out to the scholarship recipients. First in the bag was a penny with the face of Abraham Lincoln. She said this penny represents “honesty and integrity and doing what is right when no one is watching.”
A balloon with a smiley face was the second item in the bag, “it takes effort to inflate this balloon but be determined and demonstrate a lot of effort plus have a positive attitude.”
Dr Apple asked the students to pull out the eye. Unexpectedly, her phone rang. With a little humor, she asked how everyone felt, who was most important?
“Our society is getting very bad, with the days of social media and first impressions. Remember the adage, ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ and stay focused and have a positive image,” Apple said.
Next came the giant dollar bill, “being financially astute is very, very important. Your income has to equal your expenditures, plan a budget.”
Then was a piece of puzzle, reminding you to be a strategist, “have a plan and don’t let an obstacle stop your dreams.”
Finally a candle with the words, ignite and inspire greatness. “In your life it is not about one person but it is about the difference you make in others and about giving back.”
Dr Apple closed by saying, “Begin with the end in mind, think about where you want to end your life and work backwards. What do you want to be remembered by?”
For more information on STLS visit their website ww.southerntnladies.com.