Kimberly Zapata knew her name was about to be called. She fought back tears and swallowed hard before officially learning that she was awarded a $400 scholarship to help fund her education as a dental hygienist at Columbus Technical College. The financial helping hand, known as the Emile T. Fisher Scholarship, was distributed through the Columbus Technical College Foundation.
While $400 may not sound like a huge amount, it means the world to Kimberly. Because in 2009, Kimberly and her husband suddenly found themselves unemployed. After working 17 years at a plant in Opelika, the factory was shut down. Kimberly is attending school under the TRA (Training Readjustment Allowance) federal program that provides retraining and education for dislocated workers.
In her scholarship application, Kimberly wrote how proud she is to be part of the Columbus Technical College family and how excited she is to have earned the $400 Fisher Scholarship.
“It is an honor that comes with responsibilities that I do not take lightly. I strive to represent myself and the school with respect and dignity at all times,” she wrote. “While being unemployed, there are still costs that are difficult to cover. One being gas expenses to travel to Columbus four days a week!”
Kimberly says she may also use her scholarship money to help pay for extra fees and/or clinic supplies.
About the Scholarship: The Emile T. Fisher Foundation for Dental Education in Georgia works to have a positive impact on the quality of dental services in the State. Assuring there is a continuous flow of qualified candidates entering the dental profession by awarding scholarships and grants to deserving individuals helps the Foundation meet their goal. For more on the Emile T. Fisher Foundation for Dental Education in Georgia, visit www.gadental.org.