It was a very special night at the Annual Scholars Celebration Dinner that was held on Sunday evening. More than 500 people were in attendance as Austin-East and Fulton High School scholars were honored for their accomplishments and celebrated because they have met all the requirements to earn the Project GRAD scholarship.
We were glad to have Lori Tucker as the Mistress of Ceremonies this year who did a fine job. Project GRAD Board Chair Buzz Thomas (President, Great Schools Partnership) welcomed everyone and then did the invocation in Sam Brown’s absence. Scholars Briana Carter (Austin-East) and Tony Gunn (Fulton) reflected on their educational journey. GRAD Scholar Blakely Geames is a GRAD scholar attending the University of Tennessee who spoke to the Class of 2015 and talked about what to expect after graduation.
Jerry Hodges (former Executive Director of Project GRAD Knoxville) was this year’s “Caught Doing Right Award” winner and what a surprise it was for him. Jerry initiated this award eleven years ago to recognize those who go above and beyond to enhance the lives of children and are “caught doing right for kids!” Jerry retired from Project GRAD in October and returned to Knoxville to attend the Celebration Dinner.
A chorus of community leaders and teachers came together to sing the closing selection as the program came to an end. The chorus sang “Something Inside So Strong” which is a selection to encourage the scholars as they prepare to move to the next level of their lives when they graduate from high school.
Congrats Class of 2015.