External Scholarship Opportunities

Stories of Need, Giving Spur Scholarship Creation

It started small. Scott Byrd, the EMT coordinator at NWACC, learned that an emergency medical services student couldn’t afford a required uniform.


Byrd wanted to help. He collected the items needed and paid for a polo shirt out of his own pocket. Byrd couldn’t shake one notion — what if there were other students who didn’t have the guts to talk about their need? He reached out to friends. Donations started rolling in. Eventually, a storage closet in the Center for Health Professions was created. It’s now full of protective eyewear, and pairs of cargo pants, boots and steel-toed shoes.


He wasn’t done. A conversation with a fast-food restaurant employee spurred the next project. The employee said she didn’t think she could pay for tuition. A few days later at fall forum, an alumna talked about her decision to establish a scholarship to pay it forward.


For Byrd, a light bulb came on. He turned to Dean Mark Wallenmeyer and said, “I’m going to do that. I’m going to start a scholarship.”


Scott and his wife, Yolanda, a paramedic graduate, wanted to start a scholarship for EMS students. On Nov. 28 (known as #GivingTuesday), the Byrds and friends and family announced the establishment of the Dr. Monte J. Gagliardi EMS Scholarship.


Byrd named the scholarship for Gagliardi because of the former dean and faculty member’s significant influence in his life. Byrd had not been a good student before he walked into Gagliardi’s class. Suddenly, there was a transformation. “He was instrumental in my life,” Byrd said.


The announcement kicked off a campaign to raise additional dollars. Byrd already has inspired others to support students through donations to the closet. He’s hoping that now others will give to the scholarship fund.


 In Byrd’s words: “We’re going to shoot for the moon and hopefully help some people in the future.”

— Scott Byrd

Grant Funding & Scholarship Encourages First Generation Student Opportunities

The LIFE Program has received grant support from Cox Communications since 2015. As a result, of the relationship between NWACC LIFE Program and Cox Communication, first generation students who want to go to college but do not have the tools to make that leap have felt the continued encouragement and support.

These grant funds assist with Mentor and program expenses, as well as summer program enhancements.

In the fall of 2017, the College unveiled the new LIFE Lounge sponsored by Cox. The lounge provides NWACC LIFE students a dedicated space to study, collaborate, and interact with the LIFE director.  

— Cox Communications

The Judy Franklin-Bee LIFE Empowerment Scholarship

"We believe a gift to NWACC is an investment in the future of our community and making dreams come true for so many students. The Judy Franklin-Bee LIFE Empowerment Scholarship invests in and encourages first generation students who desire an education to pursue their dreams."
— Greg and Juanita Franklin