The Learning Disabilities Association of Arkansas’ (LDAA) scholarship committee has selected the three recipients for the Ralph G. Norman Scholarship.
The scholarship is awarded to Arkansas residents with documented learning disabilities to attend a university, two-year community college, or a vocational/technical training program. Ideal applicants must have a deep commitment to overcoming academic challenges and set realistic goals for their future. This scholarship fund was established to provide assistance to young adults with learning disabilities to pursue higher education.
Shelby Liner is a 2019 graduate of Mayflower High School and plans to attend Eastern College of Medical Vocations in the fall to pursue her dream of helping people as a medical assistant or nurse. She was diagnosed with learning disabilities a few years ago and has learned to overcome her disability and help others with the same diagnosis. Liner was involved in many extracurricular programs such as BETA Club, Drama Club, and volleyball. She is also a licensed EMT.
“I consider perseverance and determination to be two of her greatest qualities, said Christie Burns, Liner’s guidance counselor at Mayflower High School. “I watched her mature and learn to cope with her disability to the point she is helping other students with this same issue.”
Foster Rash is a freshman at Central Baptist College (CBC) pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Education degree and hopes to one day be a high school math teacher and baseball coach. During his time at CBC, he’s been dedicated to his studies and is on the baseball team. Rash was diagnosed with a learning disability at an early age, but he doesn’t let it stop him. Instead, he works with and encourages other students who also have learning disabilities.
“Foster leads others with learning disabilities by walking alongside them and encouraging them. He is an influencer and natural leader who automatically leads others around him by his enthusiasm for learning,” said Duffy Guyton, Rash’s assistant baseball coach at Central Baptist College. “Not only is he a leader but he is an encourager, life-long learner and a person who is committed to succeeding by doing things the right way.”
Cade Whitaker is a 2019 graduate of Calico Rock High School and will attend the University of Arkansas this fall to study agricultural science and natural resources. He was diagnosed with his learning disabilities at an early age but has learned to embrace his disabilities instead of being ashamed. Whitaker played basketball, baseball and golf in high school and held various leadership positions in different organizations.
“Cade is a true optimist, and it is his positive attitude that helps him accomplish whatever task he has been assigned,” said Kenny Thorton, a family friend and President and CEO of First National Bank of Izard County. “Cade is a go-getter who will go the extra mile to give his best to any project undertaken.”
Congratulations to the 2019 Ralph G. Norman Scholarship recipients!