By Gary Lloyd
Educators in Jefferson County, Alabama, have more than sixty-two million reasons to smile.
The graduating seniors from the Class of 2018 from the fourteen Jefferson County Schools high schools earned a total of $62,257,917.50 in scholarships.
That’s enough money to buy sixty-two Manhattan apartments. Or pay LeBron James’ salary for two NBA seasons. But most importantly, it’s enough to impact dozens of lifetimes for these students.
The Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School accounted for more than $13 million in scholarships. Minor High School’s seniors earned more than $8 million, while McAdory earned more than $6 million. Gardendale High finished with a touch more than $4 million in scholarships. Finishing with more than $3 million in scholarship money each were Center Point, Clay-Chalkville, Fultondale, Pinson Valley, and Shades Valley high schools. Corner, Hueytown, Mortimer Jordan, Oak Grove, and Pleasant Grove high schools all earned more than $2 million each in scholarships.
A video tribute to these schools and students is posted on the district’s website, and it ends with writer Henry David Thoreau’s quote: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.”
Those words are right on the money.