Since 1993, more than 100,000 high school students, parents and educators from the greater Aiken-Augusta area have attended CSRA College Night.
“I can remember the first year we held a College Night over 20 years ago. It was in the gym at North Augusta High School,” said Jay Jefferies, CSRA College Night master of ceremony. “We had about 200 to 300 students, and we were amazed with the turnout. And now, we're filling the James Brown Arena wall to wall."
Over $300,000 in scholarship funding has been offered to area students who have attended College Night in the past. “The generosity of our scholarship sponsors and much appreciated help from more than 100 volunteers are major reasons why this effort is consistently so successful each year,” said Gladys Moore, CSRA College Night Chairperson and Savannah River Nuclear Solutions employee.
This year’s event featured recruiters from over 130 colleges and universities with scholarships, each worth $1,000, awarded to 16 students during drawings held throughout the evening.
“The CSRA community provides a tremendous amount of support, both financially and with in-kind donations of service,” said Francine Burroughs of SRNS, who manages the company’s Education Outreach Program. “The community partnerships that have been forged through participation in this event allow our committee to provide more resources for the students and parents each year.”
“It’s rewarding to see so many students having the opportunity to meet with college representatives of their choice, knowing this night could have a significant impact on their post high school education,” said Moore. “To see the joy and excitement in the faces of those receiving one of our college scholarships makes all the work worthwhile.”
Moore acknowledged the contributions made by the members of the CSRA College Night Committee who put in many hours of work prior to a long evening at the huge arena. “They understand the impact this event has financially for a significant percentage of our attending students. College Night can help reduce the number of planned college visits for students, potentially saving them thousands in travel costs,” she said.
CSRA College Night is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy-Savannah River Operations Office, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, LLC, and iHeartMedia. Other contributors include: SRP Federal Credit Union, Aiken County Career and Technology Center, Bridgestone Americas, Centerra-SRS, Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering International, South Carolina Society of Professional Engineers - Aiken Chapter, American Chemical Society (ACS-SR) Augusta Coca-Cola Bottling Company, Communigraphics and Holiday Inn.