Valdosta Daily Times

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January 7, 2014

Association offers teaching scholarships

VALDOSTA — For students heading to college in 2014, the difference between pursing a chosen career and not having that option can be the availability of discretionary funds for college-related expenses. This may be especially true for prospective education majors. Lower entry level salaries compared to peers in other professions mean lessened ability to repay student loans after receiving the education degree.

Since 1997, the Valdosta Lowndes Retired Educators Association has provided $15,000 to 28 deserving Echols, Lowndes, and Valdosta seniors who intended to pursue college degrees in teaching. VLREA is a voluntary service organization of retirees associated with public education. VLREA is affiliated with the Georgia Retired Educators Association, which supports local efforts to provide scholarships.

This year, VLREA has allocated $1,000 scholarships for up to three deserving students. The recipient has the flexibility to use the money for books, tuition, or any other school-related expense.

VLREA Scholarship Chair Barbara Milhous said, “Valdosta Lowndes Retired Educators Association members contribute money in memory or in honor of others to fund scholarships, keeping alive the memories of those honored for future generations. We also receive help from community organizations and businesses through our Spotlight Ads and other fundraising efforts. We look forward to continuing our tradition of almost 20 years of providing a good start for future educators, such as last year’s awardees Meaghan Hoffman and Brittany Marie Koppen.”

The VLREA will distribute information regarding scholarships to senior counselors at local high schools. The application is simple and easy to complete. Deadline to return applications is Friday, Feb. 14. No applications will be accepted after this date. A committee will review the applications, and recipients will be notified by March 1. Parents and teachers are asked to encourage students who wish to become educators to apply for the scholarships.

More information about VLREA scholarships can be obtained from Barbara Milhous, (229) 242-8535; or by emailing the Association at

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