You can never truly leave home. Hometowns shape us and make us into who we are as people and as professionals. Ashley Lawson’s hometown has given her a sense of purpose she never expected.
Following is one of 28 first-person alumni profiles that were compiled in a photo book for the Park Foundation Trustees in September 2016. Each alumnus was ask to share highlights of his or her path from receiving the Park Scholarship to the present day.
This academic year, a Park Scholar and an alumna teamed up to develop a series of training videos for aspiring nutrition educators. Natalie Cooke ‘10, Postdoctoral Teaching Scholar in NC State’s Department of Food, Bioprocessing & Nutrition Sciences and Program Director for A PACKed Kitchen – a satellite of the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle – received a DELTA Exploratory Grant to investigate the feasibility of 360° videos in training and evaluation for a community nutrition service-learning course. Kati Scruggs ‘18, a
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As a freshman beginning her NC State career, Jezzette Rivera ‘10 anticipated pursuing a career in politics, law, and/or the nonprofit sector. She majored in criminology and political science with a concentration in law and justice, spent the summer following her freshman year interning with the League of United Latin American Citizens, and served as a House Intern with the North Carolina General Assembly throughout her junior year and the subsequent summer.
While no two Park Scholars are alike, a commonality among them is multipotentiality: each scholar possesses strengths and interests in disparate areas. One manifestation of this trait is an eclectic set of academic and life experiences, and Win Bassett’s rather circuitous professional path exemplifies this.
An eighth grade social studies and English/language arts teacher at Carroll Middle School in Raleigh, N.C., Jessie Jordan Hathcock ’11 is carrying on a family legacy in education. Her mother, who lost her battle with breast cancer when Hathcock was four years old, was a public school teacher. Hathcock grew up hearing stories of her mother’s positive impact on their community, and decided to major in middle grades education at NC State.
Across North Carolina’s Triangle and Triad, Philip Boyne, Mollie Richardson Williams, and Jasmine Frantz are working to inspire the next generation of scholars and leaders. They are teaching more than physics, chemistry and math, respectively, as they bring the values learned as Park Scholars into the classroom.
Ricky Bloomfield’s undergraduate academic pursuits at NC State could point to any number of careers. With majors in chemistry and secondary education and minors in Spanish and saxophone performance, Bloomfield ’02 used his time as a Park Scholar to academically explore far and wide.
While many are celebrating America’s Independence Day with cookouts and fireworks, Kathleen “Kat” Griffin ‘11 will board a plane bound for South Korea. The recipient of a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) grant, Griffin will spend the next year living with a host family and teaching English in a public, secondary school in an as-yet-unassigned South Korean city.
During her time at NC State, Jessica Hooks ‘03 volunteered a minimum of 16 hours per month as a crisis hotline operator. This experience afforded her perspective on the range of issues with which individuals from all walks of life must learn to cope, and heightened her interest in community wellness. After earning a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences, Hooks went on to complete a master’s in genetic counseling from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro in 2005.