If Maddie Steele’s education goes according to plan over the next few years, she’ll be returning to Henry County to work as a nurse anesthetist. But first, the 2020 graduate of Headland High School is headed to the University of Alabama this fall, where she will begin pursuing a major in nursing. She’ll have help paying her costs to achieve this goal, thanks to her selection as a Jimmy Rane Foundation scholar. Steele is one of 40 students awarded a scholarship from the Foundation this year.
“There are not enough words to express my gratitude for being chosen as a recipient for this scholarship,” Steele said. “My family feels so thankful and blessed for this generous scholarship. Receiving this scholarship gave them peace of mind as it will greatly help reduce the financial burden of my family when it comes to paying for my college expenses.”
Steele was a standout student in high school – earning a 4.2 weighted GPA, being named to the “A” Honor Roll and receiving a Gold Presidential Academic Award for GPA of 4.0 or higher. She also served as treasurer of the Student Government Association, captain of Varsity Cheerleading, treasurer of Future Business Leaders of America, officer of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, member of the National Honor Society, treasurer of the Senior Class, treasurer of Leo's Club, member of HOSA, member of the Prom Committee, member of the Ring Committee, and member of the Builder's Club. In addition, she was named Who's Who Best All Around, Who's Who Cutest Couple, and All American Cheerleader.
“It is such an honor to be selected as a scholarship recipient. I cannot express how thankful I am to have been chosen,” Steele said. “Without scholarship aid, I would not be able to attend a 4-year institution. I would also not be able to pursue my goal of getting a bachelor’s degree in nursing as well as further schooling to achieve my graduate degree in anesthesiology.”
The Jimmy Rane Foundation is dedicated to providing college scholarships for deserving students and strengthening communities through education projects and grants.
The Foundation has awarded 462 college scholarships since it was established in 2000. These scholarships are for eight semesters, not just for one year, which makes them even more critical to the success of recipients. Foundation scholars are attending universities all over the nation, and many have now graduated and become engineers, teachers, nurses, accountants, and several students are currently in medical school and law school. This year’s round of awards includes students from 12 states and represents the largest class of scholarship recipients since the foundation was established.
Jimmy Rane, founder of Abbeville-based Great Southern Wood Preserving Incorporated, traditionally hosts an annual golf tournament as the single fund-raising event for the Foundation drawing both corporate and individual sponsors. In keeping with COVID-19 large-event cancellations, the Foundation was unable to host its annual Jimmy Rane Charity Golf Tournament and awards banquet where recipients are usually recognized. However, the generous support of sponsors made it possible for the Foundation, now in its 20th year, to award the highest number of scholarships to date.
For more information, visit www.jimmyranefoundation.org or you can find the Jimmy Rane Foundation on Facebook.