News Gc Announces Bucknell Summer Scholars - Garrett College

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Campus News

May 7th, 2019

GC announces Bucknell Summer Scholars

Jones and Jefferson to study this summer at Bucknell

Two Garrett College students have been selected to participate in the prestigious Bucknell Community College Scholars Program this summer. Tierra Jones of Waldorf, Md., is currently studying liberal arts while Sharatia ‘Tia' Jefferson of Baltimore, Md. is studying electrical engineering at Garrett.

Despite a shaky first attempt at college immediately after high school, Jones refocused her goals and began her studies anew during the fall of 2018 at Garrett College. In addition to her academic studies, she is a member of the college's Student Government Association; serves as a residence life programming assistant; a student ambassador, and is an active member of the Garrett Branch of the American Association of University Women chapter.

Tierra Jones

Tierra Jones

Jones also enjoys sharing her talent as a writer through open mic events. She believes that "the past is a teaching tool for the heart" and is committed to continue along her path of learning and growth.

Jefferson has a passion for working with children and enjoys volunteering at schools in her neighborhood and teaching youth lacrosse. Despite experiencing numerous hardships and the loss of family members and friends, she has excelled in her time at Garrett College, both in the classroom and on the court.

She plays the positions of guard and forward on the Garrett College women's basketball team, averaging 14.5 points and 11 rebounds per game (February 2019 statistics). "Tia brings energy and defensive pressure to the court," stated JT Lewis, women's basketball coach.

Sharatia Jefferson

Sharaita Jefferson

In addition, Jefferson also enjoys chess and ranked first in her age group in the city of Baltimore and 22nd nationally during high school. Both students will attend Bucknell University for six weeks beginning this June and will enroll in two courses – which may include: biology of stress, psychology of attraction and close relationships, and statistical literacy for the 21st century.

During this time, the scholars will live on campus and experience a glimpse of life as a Bucknell student. Following the summer experience, the pair will return to GC this fall, bringing their Bucknell credits along, and complete their final year of community college, culminating with commencement next spring.

Just prior to graduation, the scholars will have the option to apply for the BCCSP transfer scholarship, which provides full tuition coverage while students pursue a bachelor's degree program at Bucknell, as well as continued mentoring. Only those who complete the BCCS program are eligible to apply for this generous scholarship.

The primary purpose of the program is to provide access to a higher (private) education to students that, under normal circumstances, may never be able to achieve. It is more than just a transfer scholarship. The program is designed for high-achieving, low- to moderate income community college students who aim to earn their associate degree and wish to take their education further. Garrett College is one of only six community college partners in the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program.

Ashley Ruby, director of advising and academic success, coordinates the Bucknell Program at Garrett College. "I have witnessed the life-changing impact of the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program -- my own sister took advantage of this opportunity and earned her bachelor's degree from Bucknell University in 2012.

I am honored to play a small part in this program and do so with great pride, a wealth of heart and compassion, and I look forward to celebrating the many achievements of these two young scholars, both today and into the foreseeable future," stated Ruby.

The students that apply for and are selected to participate in this opportunity are among Garrett College's top five percentile.

"I have seen many talented Garrett students take this opportunity and go on to do incredible things. Some of Garrett College's best and brightest have traveled this path – international students, a state senate candidate, engineers, a dentist, a veterinarian, environmental advocates, business gurus, sustainability activists, and many others," noted Ruby.

Recruitment efforts for the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program 2020 cohort will soon launch, beginning with summer registration of new entering students to the College this fall. In addition to providing information on the College website, resources are readily available around campus.

"A program like this can only exist with the support, advocacy, and informative nature of an enthusiastic student support team – our faculty and staff," said Ruby. Eligibility requirements for the program stipulate that candidates must achieve a 3.5 cumulative GPA in the first semester and beyond (mid-term grades can be a good indicator of this); have a low to moderate family income; complete at least 12 college level credits by the end of fall semester; be primarily enrolled in college level coursework, and declare an associate of arts degree program of study.

Ruby will hold informational sessions regarding the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program at the Garrett College McHenry campus in October and November. Interested students will have the opportunity to visit the Bucknell University campus in February 2020.

After meeting the academic and financial criteria, potential scholars must apply and attend the summer program immediately prior to community college graduation. Students then return to the community college to complete the associate degree, and are eligible to apply for the two-year transfer scholarship to Bucknell University.

For more information about the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program in addition to other transfer opportunities available at Garrett College, contact Ruby at Garrett College at 301-387-3733 or