JOHNS CREEK, Ga. — A Gwinnett County high school senior has been awarded a $3,000 scholarship as one of the first recipients of the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame Scholarship program.
The award was announced Aug. 3 at the organization’s Board of Director’s and Major Supporters meeting at Park Place Community Center in Johns Creek.
Valina Beauvoir, a senior at Collins Hill High School in Suwanee, was the area recipient in this, the first year for the scholarship. Beauvoir, a member of the Air Force Junior ROTC, has been accepted to Georgia State University and enrolled in the Georgia Air Force ROTC program.
She is one of five statewide recipients of the $3,000 scholarship.
Col. Richard White (Ret.), chairman of the board for the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame, said the organization launched the scholarship program to expand its commitment to Georgia’s youth.
The nonprofit Hall of Fame’s mission, White said, is to honor veterans and to “educate Georgia youth and citizens about the real heroes among us.”
Since its founding eight years ago, the organization has already teamed up with high school JROTC units across the state to establish service awards and honors presented each year. The scholarship program is new.
The scholarship competition is open to any Georgia high school senior enrolled in JROTC who plans to attend a Georgia college or university. The candidate must also be planning to enroll in a Senior ROTC program at college and have the intention of going on active duty in the military.
White said the Hall of Fame Scholarship Committee evaluates the candidates’ essays, their academic scores and JROTC service in the selection process.
The other winners of this year’s scholarship program were from high schools in Waycross, Columbus, McDonough and Metter.
The veterans group hopes to expand the scholarship program and is seeking sponsorships and private donations, White said.
“Going forward, we’re trying to find sponsors for this, so we can be helping individuals,” he said. “Next year, it could be 25 [scholarships].”
Sponsors will be able to attach their names to the scholarships, he said.
The Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame is headquartered in the James H. “Sloppy” Floyd Building, across from the Capitol in downtown Atlanta. Portraits and citations for all those inducted into the Hall are posted in the building.
The organization is sanctioned by the state, although it receives no public funds.
“The reason we did that is we will not accept any tax money,” White said. “We’re totally independent. However, we do enjoy the support of the state government.”
He said the organization hopes to increase its impact on the community and Georgia youth.
“We’ve tried to do this with fine integrity, tried to do it the right way,” White said.
For more information about the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame and its programs, visit gmvhof.org.