Meet the 2020 Neighbors Way Scholarship Recipients!

2020 Neighbors Way Scholarships

At the end of May, Neighbors FCU awarded $50,000 in scholarships to local graduating students. Students are selected from the 15 Mascot schools. The Neighbors Way Scholarship began in 2017 and has grown tremendously. The program has now awarded a total of $95,000 to 37 local students.

Take a look at the full ceremony below!

2020 Virtual Neighbors Way Scholarship Ceremony


Here’s the complete transcript from the ceremony if you are unable to watch!

Betty: Welcome

Good morning and thank you to each of you for gathering with us today as we celebrate the 2020 recipients of the Neighbors Way Tuition Assistance Award. Please note, that we are recording this meeting and will share an edited version with everyone in the coming weeks.

These 15 graduating seniors entered their freshman year, met by Baton Rouge’s historic flooding and are leaving in the midst of a global pandemic. Rising to these challenges would be difficult for anyone, but these students found a way to not only overcome, but excel all while demonstrating our core values of integrity, respect, honesty, empathy, ethical behavior, a positive attitude and a commitment to being a good neighbor.

While the last few months have been difficult and uncertain, I am heartened by all our community has done to uplift essential workers and reduce the negative impacts of COVID-19. As always, Neighbors has continued to focus on “building relationships that matter” and that includes offering small business resources, raising funds for the Baton Rouge Food Bank, and constantly putting our members health & safety first.

Thank you to all healthcare & essential workers present with us today and to these 15 students who have shown true resiliency over the last 4 years. Today, we have the honor of celebrating you.

Kim: Nomination criteria

In 2018 the Neighbors Capital Area Foundation launched its newest initiative, the Neighbors Way Tuition Assistance Award. Today’s college student faces higher tuition costs and a greater amount of student debt than ever before. For this reason, we established in an effort to celebrate outstanding students in the community who would benefit from financial assistance in their pursuit of higher education.

Once per year,  Neighbors Federal Credit Union invites high schools participating in the Mascot Checking Program are to nominate one graduating senior to receive the Award.

Last year, the Foundation awarded $30,000 in college scholarships to 13 students. Today we are so excited to be awarding $50,000 in scholarships, including our first 4-year scholarship for $20,000.
Here to recognize this year’s Neighbors Way Tuition Assistance Award recipients is our very own Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Steve Webb.

Steve Webb: Award presentation

Good morning and thank you so much for joining us virtually. I’m honored to present to you the recipients of the Neighbors Way Tuition Assistance Award.

Today, these 15 students will learn the scholarship award amount that they will receive. The award amount was determined by a number of factors including their embodiment of living the Neighbors Way and involvement in the community. Each student was also required to submit an original essay.

As I call your name, please raise your hand. As Betty mentioned, we are recording this ceremony and will send an edited version to share with family and friends.

1.Avery Olinde – Walker High School

Avery has a sweet & giving spirit, which comes through most when she speaks about her family. She plans to attend LSU and pursue a degree in Biological Engineering with hopes to become a Clinical Geneticist.

Avery will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

2.Mounina Abderrahmane – McKinley High School

Mounina is a shining example of determination, as an ESL student who moved to Louisiana from Mauritania in 2017. She looks forward to attending LSU in the Fall and pursuing a career in medicine.

Mounina will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

3.Amaria Green – Southern University Lab School

Amongst her peers, Amaria is known as someone who is always happy to help and care for others. She plans to attend Baton Rouge Community College to give herself time to explore nursing schools both in and out of state.

Amaria will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

4.Kassie Salling – Parkview Baptist School

Kassie is a dedicated athlete who displays resiliency and teamwork in everything she does. Kassie will attend Southeastern Louisiana University on a softball scholarship and plans to
major in Psychology.

Kassie will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

5.Mya Alford – Woodlawn High School

Mya works hard to master everything she tries, from basketball to student leadership in DECA Club. She is excited to attend LSU and major in Psychology.

Mya will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

6.Madison Miller – Denham Springs High School

Madison’s passion for teaching began at a young age, inspired by her 3rd grade teacher Mrs. Price. She plans to attend Southeastern and major in Elementary Education.

Madison will receive a $1500.00 scholarship

7.Emma Grace Spencer – The Dunham School

Emma Grace stays busy, participating in a huge range of activities from musicals to softball. She plans to attend Baylor University or LSU in the Fall with a major in Psychology and a minor in Communications.

Emma Grace will receive a $2000.00 scholarship

8.Tyler Clemmons – Port Allen High School

Tyler is a proven leader, starting Port Allen High’s first soccer team and coaching other students to success. He  will attend Southeastern to major in History and Political Science and ultimately attend law school.

Tyler will receive a $2000.00 scholarship

9.Parker Giering – Live Oak High School

Parker’s high school career has been marked by dedication, participating in cross country, track, and Beta Club all 4 years of high school. He plans to attend LSU in the Fall to enter their Chemical Engineering program.

Parker will receive a $2000.00 scholarship

10. Song Dam – Broadmoor High School

Song’s life and academic career have been marked by hard work, serving in 6 different positions of Broadmoor’s Junior ROTC program. In the Fall, he plans to attend Southern University and major in Criminal Justice.

Song will receive a $2000.00 scholarship

11. Me-Gann Adolfo – Lee Magnet High School

Moving to the U.S. from the Philippines in 2012, Me-Gann has learned to face new experiences with a positive outlook. A high-achieving student and ROTC member, she will attend LSU and major in Biochemistry.

Me-Gann will receive a $2000.00 scholarship

12. Bryce Hudson – Scotlandville High School

Bryce exudes confidence and wisdom beyond his years, facing the losses in his life with grace. He is an avid bowler and a well-known student leader at Scotlandville. He is still undecided. But nearly 20 universities have accepted him. His ultimate goal is to attend law school.

Bryce will receive a $2500.00 scholarship

13. Jailynn Johnson – Baker High School

Jailynn has an infectious and positive energy, felt by all those around her. She is the President of the Student Orientation Staff, wanting to ensure all incoming Freshman enter school with confidence. Jailynn plans to attend LSU and will major in Kinesiology with a minor in Sports Studies.

Maggie will receive a $3500.00 scholarship

14. Alissa Clemmons – Central High School

Alissa has a quiet confidence that shines through when she discusses her passion for theater and art. She is responsible and mature, caring for her brothers as her family has faced difficulties. Alissa is attending LSU in the fall to stay close to home and will major in Mass Communications with a concentration in Digital Advertising.

Alissa will receive a $5000.00 scholarship

15. Mia-Miracle Craig – Baton Rouge Magnet
High School

Mia-Miracle goes above and beyond in all she does. An exceptional student, she often rises to leadership positions naturally including as part of the Baton Rouge Youth Coalition and the Futures Fund. With a constant growth mind-set, she started her own childcare business and found her passion working with children. Several schools have accepted her, but her top choice is Texas Christian University to enter their ‘ever-innovating’ social work program.

Mia-Miracle will receive a $20,000 scholarship, receiving $5,000 per year for 4 years.

Let’s give another round of applause for these outstanding students. During such an uncertain time, it’s wonderful to highlight the bright future of each of these individuals.

Betty: Closing

This scholarship program would not be possible without the support of our generous employees. More than half of Neighbors’ 260 employees contribute a small portion of their paycheck each year to fund this scholarship program. I’d like to thank them, as they each play an important part in allowing this scholarship program to be a reality.


Thank you all for attending this virtual ceremony today. We have been so inspired to be a part of this program and to get to know each of these students. We are so looking forward to the bright paths that are ahead of each of you