Tyler Junior College

Rusk TJC Citizens Promise funds TJC scholarships for Rusk graduates

Published Thursday, 27th February 2014

The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise, the first scholarship program of its kind in Texas, may fund two years at Tyler Junior College for the top 50 percent of qualifying Rusk High School graduates.

The new initiative, announced during Thursday’s TJC board meeting, begins with the Rusk High School graduating class of 2014. The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise covers $4,000 per year (for two years) for each qualifying student who graduates in the top half of the class.

Funded by gifts and pledges from Citizens 1st Bank, The Perkins Family Foundation, and others, the program is a partnership between TJC, the TJC Foundation, Rusk ISD, Citizens 1st Bank and The Perkins Family Foundation.

“We couldn’t be more pleased to be a part of this historic first for Tyler Junior College and for the state of Texas,” TJC President Dr. Mike Metke said.

“Thanks to the continued leadership and generosity of Citizens 1st Bank and The Perkins Family Foundation, The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise will improve the lives of countless students and their families for years to come.”

Currently, there are 22 “Promise” programs nationwide, including the Kalamazoo Promise in Michigan, the El Dorado Promise in Arkansas, and the Pittsburgh Promise in Pennsylvania.

Studies of Promise programs have shown marked improvement in schools, including increased enrollment and retention, higher test scores and graduation rates, and have created a college-going culture among students, with more enrolling in college after high school.

The program’s success also extends to the community at large, with an economic boom created by more families relocating to Promise communities.

“We are fortunate to partner with the nation’s best junior college – Tyler Junior College – and announce this life-changing, economic engine for the Rusk community,” said James I. Perkins, Citizens 1st Bank president and chairman of the board. “We believe that other communities will be inspired to start similar Promise programs and help future generations through education.”


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Text of TJC Board Resolution:

OFFICIAL RESOLUTION


BECAUSE The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise is the first scholarship program of its kind in the state of Texas and will change the lives of the people of Rusk, the Tyler Junior College Board of Trustees does hereby thank and recognize Citizens 1st Bank and The James I. Perkins Family Foundation for their dedication to education and their continued generosity in their investment in the futures of Rusk students in the outstanding Rusk Independent School District by establishing The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise Program; which will 

PROVIDE A SCHOLARSHIP TO TYLER JUNIOR COLLEGE for qualifying Rusk High School students who graduate in the top half of their class; and

FUND EDUCATIONAL COSTS FOR UP TO TWO YEARS AT TJC, which will allow eligible Rusk graduates to study in fields that lead directly to employment or to earn the first half of a four-year degree; and thereby

FURTHER CREATE AND CULTIVATE a college-going culture among Rusk High School students and provide them with opportunities to complete meaningful degrees that lead to well-paying jobs and brighter futures; and 

PROMOTE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT in Rusk by producing a more educated and better skilled workforce and by encouraging families to relocate to Rusk to participate in the scholarship program.

AS THE FIRST SUCH INITIATIVE OF ITS KIND IN TEXAS, The Rusk TJC Citizens Promise is a partnership of Tyler Junior College, Tyler Junior College Foundation, Rusk Independent School District, Citizens 1st Bank, and The James I. Perkins Family Foundation, and, as such, 

POSITIVELY IMPACTS THE LIVES of Rusk students, their families, and their livelihoods for generations to come; and

SEEKS TO ENCOURAGE OTHERS to follow suit by creating similar programs in their own communities.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the members of the Tyler Junior College Board of Trustees enthusiastically support this program and present this expression of recognition and gratitude to Rusk Independent School District, Citizens 1st Bank, and The James I. Perkins Family Foundation.

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