SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 20, 2010 — Cori Jean Stewart, a student at Drury University’s campus in Cabool, will receive a $3,000 scholarship at the General Educational Development (GED) Administrators’ Conference on Wednesday, July 28 in St. Louis. Each year, the state that hosts the annual GED Administrators’ Conference has the opportunity to award scholarships to deserving GED graduates. Stewart is one of three students who will receive an award.
Stewart, a 24-year-old from Mountain Grove, Mo., dropped out of high school in 2004 just three months shy of graduation when she was pregnant with her first child. During that next year she was married and divorced and became pregnant with her second child. Stewart was working in fast food restaurants to provide for her family when she asked herself, “Is this what my life is going to be like forever? Living paycheck to paycheck, working a dead-end job?”
Stewart decided she wanted to go to college. Her grandmother Kaye Cockrum teaches GED classes in Texas County. Cockrum encouraged Stewart to take the classes, and she helped her granddaughter prepare for the GED exam. After two-to-three months of studying, Stewart passed the test earning her high school diploma.
“My grandmother was the first person I called when that diploma came in the mail,” Stewart says. “Holding that diploma was one of the best feelings in the world. I felt like I had proved to everybody, mainly myself, that I wasn’t just another statistic. I had the ticket to my future in that diploma.”
Stewart enrolled in Drury in August 2005 and has already earned an Associate of Science in psychology and is the assistant manager at National TV Sales and Rental. She often visits her grandmother’s GED classes and Cockrum brags about Stewart, saying, “Here’s my granddaughter, she took her GED and now she is in college, with a good job already.”
Stewart plans to pursue a bachelor’s of education and become a GED instructor herself.
Drury is an independent University, church related, grounded in the liberal arts tradition and committed to personalized education in a community of scholars who value the arts of teaching and learning. Education at Drury seeks to cultivate spiritual sensibilities and imaginative faculties as well as ethical insight and critical thought; to foster the integration of theoretical and practical knowledge; and to liberate persons to participate responsibly in and contribute to a global community. For more information, visit www.drury.edu/strategicplan.
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