Georgia's Own will be closed on Monday, February 19th in observance of Presidents' Day.
Meet our 2023 Student Loan Payoff Contest winners
Student loan debt is an issue that affects more than 40 million Americans. We decided to do our part and help our members who have already graduated by giving three deserving people $10,000 each—a total of $30,000—to help pay off their student loan debt. Meet our winners!
Round 1 Winner
Travis Reid, from Loganville, has been a member of Georgia’s Own since he was a teenager and currently works as a nurse. He’s also newly married, and his wife is a veterinary student at the University of Georgia.
After his father passed away last year, he bore the responsibility of taking over a mortgage with his mother, leaving him financially responsible for two households—on top of tackling his student loan debt.
Get to know Travis below:
Round 2 Winner
As a first-generation college student growing up in a single-parent household, Simon Chang has had to work throughout college and graduate school to fund his own education—racking up nearly $100,000 in student loan debt. When his mother, a cancer survivor, couldn’t work during COVID, Simon picked up an extra role to help with the bills while continuing to work towards his doctorate of physical therapy at Augusta University.
Simon’s dream is to partner with the Georgia Department of Health to open a mobile clinic and serve people who live in rural areas across the state.
Check out Simon’s story:
Round 3 Winner
Cameron Thomas, from Acworth, has been a member of Georgia’s Own for almost seven years. He’s a graduate of the University of Georgia and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earning a bachelor’s degree and masters of public health. He currently works as a public health analyst, specializing in health policies related to protecting Americans from injury and violence.
Cameron has goals of owning a home and starting a family. We hope this helps get him closer to pursuing his dreams in the community he serves so passionately.
Watch Cameron’s story here.
Thank you to all of our incredible applicants for your submissions—narrowing down three winners was more difficult than ever.
Congratulations Travis, Simon, and Cameron! We’re proud to have you in the Georgia’s Own family.
Congratulations to our 2020 Southwest Georgia scholarship winners
Congratulations to our Southwest Georgia scholarship winners! We awarded $1,000 to 23 students selected by a panel of judges who considered: academic record, financial need, school/community service, and an essay. Including the $23,000 committed to this year’s recipients, Georgia’s Own has awarded nearly $140,000 in scholarships to Albany students over the last 16 years. Meet this year’s winners:
Alexis Crimes | University of West Georgia
Alexis Danforth | Georgia Gwinnett College
Amiel Johnson | Wesleyan College
Amiraica Johnson | Albany State University
Annlyn Royal | Berry College
Ariana Drake | North Carolina A&T State University
Ashlynn Wright | Fort Valley State University
Ayanla Dudley | Florida A&M University
Ayanna Newberry | Valdosta State University
Bethany Phillips | Valdosta State University
Elijah Humphries | University of Georgia
Emily McClure | Georgia Southwestern State University
Gavin Baker | Kennesaw State University
Hayley Newberry | Georgia Southwestern State University
Jamia Lofton | Georgia Southern University
Katherine Smith | Truett McConnell University
Kirby Perry | Valdosta State University
Makayla Gay | Shorter College
Michael Harris | Middle Tennessee State University
Lindsey Creech | Georgia Southwestern State University
Rhiannon Belcher | Kennesaw State University
Sarah Mullins | University of Georgia
Tyler Coker | Valdosta State University