Wednesday, February 28, 2024

GLOW’s first senior class bring in over a million in scholarships

GLOW founder Judy Girard speaks to the academy’s 2023 class on Jan. 12. (Port City Daily/Brenna Flanagan).

WILMINGTON — The charter school Girls Leadership Academy of Wilmington is shared the the successes of its first senior class ahead of its May graduation, including a total of $1.7 million and counting in merit scholarships.

The achievement was announced on Thursday at the academy’s senior breakfast with parents and staff.

GLOW founder Judy Girard the Director of College Access Jahleese Hadley spoke at the event, praising the 2023 class on their milestones.

“We are only halfway through the year and the senior class of 2023 has already knocked it out of the park,” Hadley said during her speech.

They shared 94% of graduates have applied for college and 84% have been accepted to at least one college so far, with regular decisions still forthcoming. Those acceptances amount to 126 spread across 45 colleges.

While financial need scholarships have yet to be distributed, the $1.7 million in merit-based awards mark an important measure of success for GLOW, which opened in 2016. Their mission was to provide a rigorous college preparatory curriculum to a diverse cohort. Many of the school’s attendees will be the first to attend college from their families; 72% of the 2023 class, many of whom started at GLOW in sixth grade, will be first-generation college students.

The average award amount for this year’s group was $50,000 for four years. The highest amount was $116,000.

“We are really proud of you guys and so happy, for you have set up this school for years to come,” Girard said in her speech to students.

GLOW’s College Access program includes college tours, visits from college admissions counselors, and one-on-one guidance throughout the middle and high school years to help students build a competitive college application. Even after the senior send-off, GLOW’s College Access staff will continue to connect with graduates and offer support to assure social, emotional and academic achievement into their college years.

GLOW is North Carolina’s only single gender public charter school. With a focus on providing educational choice for students from predominately underserved communities, the sixth through 12th grade school is part of a nationwide network of 21 single-gender schools.  This Young Women’s Leadership Network is guided by a educational model focused on academic rigor, personal responsibility, leadership and college preparedness.

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