Cochise College sophomore Hannah Vaughan has been named a 2009 Coca-Cola Silver Scholar, an honor that recognizes her as one of the top community college students in the nation.
The honor is doubly precious to Vaughan, who makes special efforts to ensure her 3-year-old son grows up valuing education. The two are often seen together on the Sierra Vista Campus, and he attended the All-Arizona award ceremony with her in February. Prior to being notified of the All-Arizona tuition waiver, she was making plans for a future that might not have immediately included continuing her education. She describes the scholarships she’s received as life-changing.
“Because of the high cost of attending a university, and the daily struggles as a single parent, I would not have been able to continue my education after this year,” Vaughan said. “I am honored and blessed to have been chosen for this award, which will allow me to pursue my dreams, and I am extremely grateful to have the opportunity to provide a better life for my son and to show him the importance of a good education.”
Vaughan said her experience at Cochise College has been one of the most rewarding experiences of her life. A student of languages, she has served as an officer in Phi Theta Kappa honor society and the campus Social Concerns Club. After graduating this May, she plans to transfer to Northern Arizona University and continue her studies with the goal of becoming a translator and interpreter. As a Coca-Cola Scholar, she and Cochise College will be recognized in the April 6 edition of USA TODAY.
“It is strongly due to the dedication and commitment of the wonderful faculty and administration that I have come this far in my studies and future plans,” she said. “I have also received inspiration and support from my parents and my son, Samuel, who is the main reason I aspired to finish my education.”