DALLAS, Texas, Aug. 12, 2020 — Voyager Sopris Learning today announced Natasha Reasor from Alabama and Megan Weigel from Mississippi are the winners of the 2020 Aspiring Teacher Scholarship contest. Reasor and Weigel — recent high school graduates who will be starting college later this month — each earn a $1,000 scholarship from the company.
The contest was open to graduating high school seniors from Alabama and Mississippi who will be pursuing a bachelor's degree in education, with one winner being named from each state. All entrants were required to submit a 500-word essay on why they want to become a teacher and a letter of recommendation from an instructor or guidance counselor.
Reasor is a recent graduate of Calera High School in Calera, Ala., where she was a member of the National Honor Society. She will be attending Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, Ala.
"I have had many teachers in my lifetime and have been shaped by each and every one as a student," Reasor wrote as part of her essay. "Teachers sometimes think that they haven't done much for a student, but in reality they have changed that student's life in unimaginable ways. I knew that I wanted to be the individual to inspire and instill confidence in a future generation of children."
Weigel is a recent graduate of Center Hill High School in Olive Branch, Miss., where during her senior year she served as a student tutor in special education at a local elementary school. She will be attending the University of Mississippi in Oxford.
"The state needs more special education teachers who are committed in working and helping children on their academic goals," Weigel wrote. "Imagine if more people would have the commitment to help students to reach their potential in any subject. I believe it's an honor being a teacher for the next generation of Mississippi students. My goal as a teacher is not only give every child the education they deserve but guide them to be the best person they can be."
The 2020 Aspiring Teacher Scholarship was sponsored by LETRS (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling), Voyager Sopris Learning's landmark professional learning series on the science of reading. Both Mississippi and Alabama use LETRS as a key part of their statewide literacy initiatives to teach educators the science of reading and give them the skills to teach language and literacy to every student, even those with reading challenges like dyslexia.
For more information about Voyager Sopris Learning, visit www.voyagersopris.com.