2013 HFA Scholarship Winners

2013 HFA Scholarship Winners

W. R. "Bill" Higon, HFA Scholarship Committee Chair, is pleased to announce that Amber Smith, of Leitchfield, Kentucky, daugther of Douglas and Mary Smith, and Leah Wood, of Andrews, North Carolina, daughter of Keith and Teresa Wood, have been awarded scholarships to attend college this fall. Amber is continuing her studies toward a nursing degree at Elizabethtown Community/Technical College in Elizabethtown, Kentucky; and Leah will enter Young Harris College in Young Harris, Georgia, as a freshman majoring in secondary English (grades 6-12) and theater performance. Both young women had excellent grades and recommendations.

Amber Smith of Leitchfield, Kentucky

Amber Smith 13

Sponsored by her grandfather, HFA Historian Eugene Smith, Amber has already completed a year in college and was on the Dean's List her first semester at Eastern Kentucky University. She transferred to Elizabethtown Community and Technical College this spring, where she has also done very well and was invovled in many extracurricular activities, such as Campus Crusades, weekly Bible and book discussion groups, Catholic Campus Ministries, and American Red Cross blood drives. She plans to transfer to Western Kentucky University this fall to continue er work toward a bachelor's degree in nursing.

Amber also received a Higdon scholarship award last year and has excelled in her college studies. About her future goals, she writes, "After working as a RN for a few years (maybe even a travel nurse), I would then like to continue my education even further and obtain my doctorate in nursing through WKU and become a nurse practitioner." Amber's older brother, Wesley Adam Smith, received HFA scholarship awards in 2009 and 2010 and he graduated this spring from Western Kentucky University with a major in exercise science. He plans to enter graduate school this fall, with the goal of becoming a phyiscal therapist. Amber's oldest brother, Jared D. Smith, is also a graduate of WKU in the field of civil engineering and is now working as an engineer in training for the Kentucky Department of Transportation.

Leah Wood 13

The other HFA scholarship awardee, Leah Wood, was sponsored by her grandmother, HFA member Eva Higdon Wood, and was described by one of those who recommended her as "a resourceful, innovative young woman," who excels in language arts, music, and drama. Leah participated in the Andrews Community Youth Players, the Appalachian Players, and her high school show choir. An outstanding student, she was described by a teacher as "one of the most articulate students I have ever had the pleasure of teaching."

Leah descibed her senior project, which involved her turning a room in the Valleytown Cultural Arts Center, where she worked, into a backstage green room. "I scraped windows, repainted, built both a countertop and bookshelves, and refurnished the whole room." Most recently, she played the role of Snow White in the Appalachian Players production of Ever After.

Leah's two first cousins, Matthew and Meredith Wood, were also recipients of HFA scholarship awards. Matthew graduated from Western Carolina University, in Cullowhee, and Meredith graduated from North Carolina State University, in Raleigh.

Leah is from a long line of North Carolina Higdons who trace their ancestry to Leonard and Mary Higdon, who were in Anson County, NC in the 1750s; and Amber is from a long line of Kentucky Higdons, descendants of Ignatius and Mildred Dyson Higdon (born in Maryland in the late 1700s).

Assisting HFA Scholarship Chair Bill Higdon, of Moon, Virginia were committee members Charles P. Higdon, of Clinton, Tennessee, and Sally H. Swain, of Lebanon, Tennessee.

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