Jasmine - Texas
My name is Jasmine and by the grace of GOD I have been blessed to receive a scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation. Growing up was a struggle. I did not have a normal childhood. There were times that I did not have all the necessities I needed. My family was homeless and at times we didn't know where our next meal was going to come from. Both my parents struggled with addiction. I witnessed domestic violence. All of these circumstances came with a price and as a result my grades fell. My mother was incarcerated when I was eight years old. From then on my grandparents took on the task of raising me. My father also helped too when he could. Through all the heartaches and struggles, I have learned many things, but the most important is that times of struggle too shall pass. I graduated with my Associates Degree from Tarrant County College and currently in my first semester of nursing school. Creative Corrections Education Foundation has shined a light and opened my eyes to a secondary passion. I am currently working with Texas Representatives to create a grant for students with incarcerated parents to achieve a post-secondary education, so that they too can have a chance at life and be successful.
Chris - Wisconsin
My name is Chris and I attend Bethany Lutheran College. I have received three scholarships from CCEF thus far and it has made a huge difference and has had an amazing impact on my college experience. Going to a private school and all, things can get pretty expensive, and you can find yourself on the borrowing end of the spectrum rather quickly. However, with the scholarship I have received from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation, I have been able to get the things I need to be successful while attending Bethany Lutheran College. I am truly grateful of the help I have received from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. It has affected my college experience greatly!
Caleb - Texas
Education is a priority in our family and i've always planned to attend college but I just wasn't sure how I would be able to afford it. My family has faced some financial challenges over the past few years and things are really tight. I'm so thankful my mom saw Mr. Pitzer on television one night. The Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship was a tremendous help in financing my college education. Honestly, without the scholarship, I would not have been able to attend Jarvis Christian College and pursue my education!
Anna - Alabama
“I am so excited and thankful to be attending Baylor University. My enrollment here would not have been possible without the kindness of many generous persons. In particular, I am grateful for the scholarship I received from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. These funds are helping to provide for my tuition as I study and prepare to be a Student Minister. I have heard God’s call upon my life and have dedicated myself to a vocation of helping and guiding young people. Though I have only been in college for a few weeks, I have already encountered many rich experiences that are helping to shape me for a lifetime.”
Tyral - Texas
It's a blessing and an honor to have received this award from Creative Corrections Education Foundation. It's helped lift some weight off of me of wondering where and how I would find the financial help to get through school in the 2014-2015 year. I thank you all very much God is good all the time.
Holly - Ohio
I am attending school at Johnson and Wales University in Charlotte, North Carolina. I am from Garrettsville, Ohio. My college is 8 hours away from my house. I have wanted to attend a school that I will be able to get better education in corporate accounting. I am planning on going to Johnson and Wales University for the next 4 years and getting my bachelors degree. With receiving this scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation, I am going to reach my goals with going to college to further my education.
Natalie - Minnesota
When I began applying to colleges, I was fearful. Fearful about whether or not I would be accepted. Fearful about how I would manage. Fearful about how I would pay for my education on my own. Growing up in a single parent household, with the umbrella of my father's mistakes shading everything we did was distressing. I started losing hope in ever having a future beyond what my parents provided. Creative Corrections Education Foundation changed that mindset and gave me hope. Besides the very generous monetary support I received for my education, CCEF showed me they believed in my abilities that I was worth the effort and for that type of commitment to me, I will be eternally grateful.
Elizabeth - Texas
I had received good financial aid from Texas Lutheran University, but I was still struggling to come up with the money I still owe, for the school year. When I received the email about the scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation, it was like a blessing, knowing I can keep dreaming of one day becoming a doctor.
Billy Joe - South Carolina
This scholarship has helped me continue to strive to rise above by giving me the last bit of scholarship that I was missing for my senior year. Each year I've applied for scholarships that give them based on academic merit, personal hardship, and need in order to fill the slight void that I have left over from other scholarships and personal investment ability. The Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship has also brought about a slight sense of relief from my father, since something positive has become of this nightmare of his called prison. Moreover, other parents in the same facility as my father are becoming increasingly excited at the opportunity to have their children apply for this opportunity. Long story short, this not only helped me pay for and finish my undergraduate education, but it also raised the morale of my father and other prisoners because of the ability to help their children at a time in their lives when it is nearly impossible to do so.
Marshae - Ohio
Hello. I am thankful for the scholarship that I received from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. I am so much closer to my dream to become a nurse because of the help they have given me. I work harder because I know there are people who believe in me and want to see me achieve my goals. Since I received the scholarship I have everything I need to finish the school year great. All my books and classes are paid for in full and I graduate very soon. This was a gift from Creative Corrections Education Foundation and also my mother who has been incarcerated for 10 years. She feels she hasn't or couldn't do anything to help me but this has made my future become brighter and once she is released from prison I will be established so she will never have to be in a situation like this. Thanks
Letter from an incarcerated father to his son
Today we begin the second year of my prison term. I say 'we' because my incarceration impacts your life, your sister and your mother too. I think of you every day and wish things were different. What I want you to know is that your life can be different from the one I chose. Everything is possible with a focus on your dreams and hard, honest work.
I just got back from the chow hall this morning and have a few minutes to send you a note before I have to be back to work in the dish room. Believe me, cleaning pots and pans is no walk in the park. Yesterday around 2:00 PM, there was a disturbance on the recreation yard and the institution went to lock down status until this morning. With the excitement of you graduating from high school, I couldn't tell anyone or share the happiness I'm experiencing because a group of Gang Members decided to settle their differences violently.
That means there will be no visitors for a while so I will repeat my days just like today:
* There is no privacy; I share my cell, the unit bathroom and even the TV with other men
* Wake up time is 6 am no matter what
* I eat what is served and when I am scheduled
* One hour a day is recreation
* Five times a day I must stand at attention to be counted by the correctional officer
But the hardest part of all this for me is not being able to be with you all the time, everyday.
You once asked me what I wanted the most when I'm released back to society and I have spent some time thinking about your question. As you know I have five more years before I complete this sentence. The only thing I want is for my son to have a college degree. I have spoken to my Unit Manager and Counselor and they have agreed to help me look for grants or financial aid to assist in you going to college. The decisions I have made in the past have led me to this facility, no one is to blame but myself. I can't imagine my son going thru the same daily routine that I am forced to do.
I love you and have to get to work, hope to see you next month when visiting is opened back up.
P.S. Remember the phrase our pastor used to say? " Don't be afraid of greatness". You have greatness in you son and everyday I believe in you and what you accomplish.
Donnell - Texas
The Creative Corrections Education Foundation has been a huge help to me in my endeavors. You have provided a source of motivation to me to be able to pursue my dreams and given me a sense of determination, letting me know that I cannot give up no matter what. I am more than grateful for the scholarship Creative Corrections Education Foundations has given me. With the extra assistance, I am able to persevere through an obstacle which hinders many people from pursuing a higher education. Thank you so much for your support.
Taylor - Texas
I just want to take the time to thank the organization of Creative Corrections Education Foundation for the scholarship I have been awarded for the fall of 2014. Coming to school here at Stephen F. Austin State University, I came on a pretty low budget. I could barely get the books I wanted in time for classes and other school related things but the scholarship award help me a lot financially. Not only did this scholarship help me with my school supplies but I was also able to join one of the greatest fraternities in the nation where I've met some of my closest friends and that is something to really be thankful for. I am truly blessed to have received this award and I will put it to good use! Thank you!
Mikeah - Texas
My name is Mikeah and I received a scholarship from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. This award has helped me in such an amazing way. Attending college is an expensive thing to do. This scholarship has helped with my fees for books I needed for classes. Not only has it help financially but it has helped me emotionally. There was a shirt that I received in the mail from the foundation reading, "It is easier to build strong children, than to repair broken men. " I love this shirt and these words, I agree very strongly with what it says and represents. I have a lot of thanks and appreciation to give to this foundation.
Nathalie - New York
The Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship has helped me tremendously this semester. I had lost my tuition assistance last year and was working two jobs yet still struggling to pay for school. Neither of my parents are able to help me pay for school as my father was recently released from prison and had no job and my mother can barely afford to take care of my three younger siblings. Over the summer break, before finding out that I won the scholarship, I was working more hours to try and save money to pay for school. Then I became sick and missed over a month and a half of work and lost my second job in the process. I was worried that I was not going to be able to finish my last year of school after working so hard and being so close to graduating. I was overwhelmed with my financial obligations and over an unknown illness that was holding me back from finishing school. Winning the scholarship raised my spirits immensely and gave me hope that I will be able to finish school this academic year even though it was a difficult time. My illness may still be unknown to me but I do know that stress makes it worse, but now I will have one of my major stressors resolved and that is all thanks to a wonderful scholarship.
My name Kristopher and by the grace of God I have received a scholarship from the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. Since I can remember, my family has always had problems with finances. It has only been my mother and I for the past 19 years. I was born in Wichita Falls, Texas and raised in Grapevine, TX. I attended Grapevine High School and was accepted to the University of Texas at Austin; however, I chose to attend the University of North Texas. I have never regretted my decision due to this being a part of God's plan. At, UNT, I have become an active member of numerous organizations and honor societies based on high GPAs and pre-health professions. Most notably, I am an active member of Beta Upsilon Chi, a national Christian fraternity. This scholarship will aid me on my path towards finishing my Bachelor's in Biology and going on to complete medical school here in Texas. Furthermore, this scholarship will help me fulfill my dream in graduating without any kind of debt.
Ashley - Ohio
Recieving a scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation really meant a lot to me! That has helped me with books, supplies, and even gas money to get me to college. I don't know how I would of got that stuff if it was not for that scholarship. I currently am in my second semester and that scholarship helped me get as far as I am now in college. When I wrote this paper to this scholarship committee I didnt think I would be chosen however, a person will never know unless they try. Thanks again for the scholarship which helped me get through my first semester of college toward my register nursing license.
Aisha - Kentucky
My father has been incarcerated most of my life and has not been able to provide any financial support. I come from a single parent household and my mother has struggled to ensure we have what we need. Securing the monies needed for college has been a challenge. The Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship has helped decrease the amount I owed to fund my college expenses. I appreciate being awarded a scholarship from CCEF.
Justin - Ohio
The Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship is going to allow me to achieve my goal of going to college and graduating. This helps me out being that I am in a financial restraint due to me reducing my work hours so I can attend college. Receiving the scholarship means I can complete my higher education and reach my ultimate goal. Thank you Creative Corrections Education Foundation for the opportunity and I am greatly appreciative for the scholarship award.
Kenyon - Texas
College is a dream for me. But the nightmare of all the horror stories about being in debt behind student loans is something that frightens me the most. I'd like the opportunity to come out of college and start my life without the bondage of debt from student loans. With the help of The Creative Correction Scholarship Foundation, they will help make it possible. Many kids/youth have unfortunate situation that many people may not know about. Everyone has a story. My mother has been incarcerated my entire high school career; and that was something that was hard for me to get past. But all I can do now is try to make her proud. I don't have rich parents who can pay for my education, but why should that limit me? I'm going to continue to push forward, and make the best of my life. Starting with college, and I would like to that the CCEF for helping make it possible!
Micah - Ohio
Winning this scholarship means that I have not become a statistic of the “at risk children” of the incarcerated. I hope that I will be a role model to others who have known the trauma of a conviction of a parent, whether it is a wrongful conviction or a right one. You can overcome the stigma and the bullying of others, by being the best you can be. It only matters to be true to yourself. My mother told me an author and motivation speaker by the name of Sol Gordon who spoke to the youth in her day said, “The best revenge was to do well.” I have never felt the need for revenge but the quote makes sense to me. If someone calls you a failure or says you are like someone they think is no good, the best thing you can do is “do good” in this life. It is your life and you are the one who will suffer or enjoy the consequences. I intend to be an overcomer and become a college graduate and a professional. I intend to someday use my education and experience to help others be an overcomer also. This scholarship will help me obtain my dream.
Logan - Wisconsin
My name is Logan, and the scholarship from CCEF will allow me to pursue a B.A. in Journalism at University of Wisconsin – Madison. My dream is to become a full-time film writer or an editor, and the support from CCEF is making my dream an attainable reality. I'm currently attending a two-year community college to continue my education without going into debt, but without the funding from this generous organization, I would never have been able to finish my studies. And now I can!
Deronte – Maryland
My name is "DeRonte";several years ago, I adopted the phrase, "I want to succeed as bad as I want to breathe" as my personal mantra. Ruminating on this phrase, I realized, being a recipient of a Creative Corrections Education Scholarship, equated to being infused with a lifetime supply of pure oxygen. Given such an honor provides me the opportunity to attain an equal footing with others on my educational journey. Now my future success will be based on my potential, rather than lack of finances or how society visualizes “children of incarcerated parents”!
Alyssa – New Mexico
I am a third year business administration student with a minor in journalism and communication. I aspire to become a Disney Event Planner in Disneyland, California. I was awarded $1,000 in scholarship through the Creative Corrections Education Foundation. Attending college is very costly and has taken a financial toll on my family by having to take out student loans. With this scholarship money, I will be able to continue my education at the University of New Mexico. The scholarship has allowed me to take out one less student loan and will be very beneficial to me now and in the future. Because of the foundation’s generosity, I will be able to continue working towards my dream of becoming a Disney Event Planner.
Danielle - New Mexico
Hello, my name is Danielle and I attend Western New Mexico University. I am beyond thankful and honored to be awarded a scholarship from CCEF foundation. I just found out about it recently because my father recently suggested it to me earlier this year. This was his way of helping me and being a part of my life. I will be the first in my family to be a college graduate. None of my aunts, uncle, cousins, parents or siblings have graduated college. Since I returned to get the required classes for nursing, my mom, my mother in law, and my younger cousin have all shown interest in college and my mom is now enrolled at WNMU. Now that all the required classes are complete I am an enrolled nursing student attempting to get my Bachelors in the Science of Nursing. I was awarded “President’s List” as an academic achievement for fall 2014 and spring 2015. This scholarship will be taken with much fulfillment and appreciation. I am extremely grateful to be given this scholarship and will do my best to make CCEF and my family proud!
Whitney – New Mexico
Thank you for awarding me with the Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship. This scholarship will be used for tuition and books to cut down cost on my education.
Terrell - Ohio
I plan on using the scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation to help fund multiple aspects of my college life. The two main aspects I plan on using this scholarship for are helping fund my cost of living, as I am a commuter, and to help pay for summer classes. My goal is to graduate early so this scholarship is helping to make that possible. I am grateful for this foundation to help people in similar situations as myself.
Letter from Father in Prison to CCEF Foundation Committee.
November 25, 2015
Dear Scholarship committee:
I am writing on behalf of my son, DeRonte Christopher Craig. My name is Ronald Craig and I am currently incarcerated in the Virginia Prison System. Unfortunately, I’ve been incarcerated in the Maryland and Virginia system for the past 16 ½ years. In 1998 when I was arrested my son DeRonte Craig just turned 1. He is now, 17 years old. It has been a constant struggle for him to grow up with only one parent physically there in the household but I’ve tried as best as possible to do what I could, when I could and to be there for him mentally as much as possible since I couldn’t be there physically.
DeRonte has grown into a fine young man with a very bright future ahead of him. He was educated in Maryland Public school system. He is a senior and will be graduating this year from northwestern high school (class of 2015) so far this year in school, DeRonte has maintained a 4.0 GPA each quarter. His cumulative GPA covering all of his high school years so far is 3.104 and he ranks 73 in a class of 476. He is also a part of a program called dual enrollment which allows him to leave high school early each day and attend classes at Prince Georges Community College. He has also been accepted to several colleges (Morgan State University, Mount St Mary’s University, Frostburg State University, Bowie State University, and Hampton University) and is awaiting decisions from a couple more. So far DeRonte has narrowed his choice towards Morgan State University. DeRonte’s problem is one of a financial nature. Even though he has been accepted to several schools he still needs to somehow be able to pay the tuition to attend. I wish that I were home to be able to help because as a parent, he would have my last penny just so he could have an opportunity to succeed.
I am doing what I can to write to try and ask that you can help him by providing any type of financial assistance, scholarships or grants. I believe that DeRonte would be an excellent choice for someone to sponsor or offer a scholarship to. He has the drive to do what it takes to be successful and DeRonte will eventually go onto do big things and he will be very appreciative of those people who have took the time to assist him. I’ve done a lot of things in my life that I shouldn’t have and that I am not proud of. I am so very proud of my son. I want so much more for DeRonte than the life I currently have and don’t ever want to see him going in this direction. Education is the key to everything, but as you know, education cost money or requires scholarships and grants. I do hope and pray that you somehow find it in your heart to assist my son DeRonte Craig in whatever way you can in his quest for a higher education.
Ronald Craig #1210138
Eturnitee - Virginia
My name is Eturnitee and I attend Clark Atlanta University. I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which is 10 hours away from Atlanta, Georgia. My grandparents taught me that education is essential especially majoring in biology and wanting to be a pediatric surgeon. I plan on graduating from CAU in 2018 and receiving my Bachelors of Science degree. Receiving this scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation, I am blessed to reach my financial goals in attending an expensive private school. Thank you so much I definitely appreciate it.
JaVawn - Ohio
Receiving this scholarship has helped me out a great deal. On campus I am very involved in many different organizations and hold leadership positions in almost all of them as well. This scholarship helped me for school to help me not have to take out another loan this semester and save me more financial hassle. This scholarship helped me realize that even though I may not have the perfect situation good things can still come from my situation, and I have to continue to make the most of the opportunities that I have received. I understand that I am blessed and although my situation is not perfect I can still do great things. I am very thankful for this scholarship and will continue to strive to do great things in my school and in the community.
Diamond - Virginia
“Hello my name is Diamond! I am currently pursuing my undergraduate degree at Elizabeth City State University in Elizabeth City, NC. Although I am from Virginia and ECSU is out of state, this university was the least expensive when it came to my major. I am pursuing a Bachelor's in pharmaceutical sciences. I have always wanted to become a pharmacist. I have had this aspiration ever since I was a young girl. I have had many problems as far as my parents being incarcerated throughout my entire life, but was blessed to have an aunt to take me in at such a young age. I refuse to let these issues discourage me from my goals, especially with having such a great support system.
I have had much help from my loved ones. They have helped me tremendously, but they cannot help with everything especially when it comes to finances. Each year I have small problems but this year it was a huge problem on such late notice, that I would need more help with financial aid.
This was not the first time I received help from CCEF. I received a scholarship from Creative Corrections Education Foundation my freshman year. I thought it was impossible for me to receive help twice. I continued to pray and do all that I needed to ensure that I would return to my university in the Fall.
This is a wonderful foundation that I cannot thank enough. You all surely make the students who have had incarcerated parents feel that they deserve to receive a higher education, just as those students whose parents have been on the right path their entire lives. This experience causes me to continue to have faith in myself, and work towards all of my goals.”
Danielle – New Mexico
I just want to thank you for the financial support. It means a lot that this organization can help students that come from a parent on welfare and the other incarcerated. I have hope to be the first in my family to graduate and achieve my goals, thank you so much!!
Sarah - Ohio
I am the proud recipient of the 1000 dollar scholarship from Creative Corrections. This money will help me to achieve my goals of becoming a college graduate and succeeding in my future. Thank you!
Olivia - Ohio
I am honored to have received a $1,000 scholarship from CCEF. This money will help me to continue my education and my goal of becoming a CPA. I am very grateful.
Victor - Louisiana
My name is Victor and I attend Loyola University. I am truly grateful for the scholarship received from Creative Corrections Education Foundation for my freshman and sophomore years. It has been a great help for me financially and a great investment in completing my college dreams. I am very thankful to this foundation.
Caesar – Ohio
Again, I would like to thank you guys at the Creative Corrections Education Foundation for giving me the scholarship opportunity and making school more affordable for me! I appreciate all you've done the past few years and I can't thank you all enough!!
Brett - Ohio
I am so thankful that the Creative Corrections Education Foundation has awarded me a scholarship. I thank them for helping make my dream of being a college graduate a reality. I am glad to see my hard work in the classroom has paid off. This scholarship has greatly eased the burden of paying for my college education, and I just want to say thank you!
Kalin – New York
I would like to thank everyone at Creative Corrections Education Foundation for the scholarship. The $1000 will be a big help toward paying my tuition for this semester as I start my road to becoming a clinical psychologist.
Erika – Alabama
The CCEF scholarship fund has helped me with my journey with continuing education by taking some of burden off my family and I as I go this time with my mother. My mother and I share a close bond that most mothers and daughters don’t have and with her being gone it has affected me. This scholarship, along with the many others I applied, for have really helped me take my mind off the monetary value of college and focus on becoming the amazing surgeon that I have yet to become. While I hate that my mother is away from me right now, I know that going to college was important to her and I. I thank CCEF, because without them and the aide of others in my life, I think college today would be a big stretch for me.
Aron - Montana
I am attending MSU-Northern in Montana and I am enrolled in Agriculture operations technology a four years bachelor’s degree of which I am in my fourth year. The college I'm at right now is very reasonable when it comes to cost of attending. Yet every bit of support helps. I am trying my best to keep my out of pocket cost low so I'm not so far in debt when I’m out of school. So when the creative corrections education foundation offered their help in the form of a scholarship my first year helped me immensely. With my situation of it just being my mom and I while my dad was incarcerated was tough, especially with me starting college a new endeavor for myself. It made me feel great that there was a program to help out with the fiscal responsibility of college during my situation. I missed my dad during the time he was away, but I appreciated all the help this foundation did for me in offering me a scholarship.
Rhyan - Virginia
The biggest and most prevalent concern regarding attending college for me was the daunting issue of our financial situation. A lot of the weight for paying for college rested on my shoulders through scholarships and numerous loans. Due to Creative Corrections Education Foundation’s scholarship, I will be able to further my education at George Mason University with additional financial security for the year. This generous contribution will, ultimately, assist in covering numerous costs such as tuition, room and board, and other fees, as well as eliminate the need for another additional loan. For this, I am very grateful to be a recipient of the Creative Corrections Education Foundation scholarship, and hope to continue achieving excellence in all of my academic endeavors.