Scholarship Established in Friend's Memory
“I’ve been waiting to do this for years,” said Cathy Wright, director of the Newnan Campus. “She was a special person in my life.”
In the late 1980s, Emily Thomasson Sealy worked with special education students at Atkinson Elementary in Newnan, GA.
Coweta County residents enrolling at the University of West Georgia can now apply for the Emily Thomasson Sealy Memorial Scholarship, created and awarded for the first time in 2008.
Sealy’s lifelong passion for education benefited her students and colleagues and it was for this reason that her protégé, Cathy Wright, director of the University of West Georgia’s Newnan Campus, along with members of the teacher’s honor society Alpha Delta Kappa, established the scholarship in her name and memory.
“She was such an inspiration to so many people and a giving, selfless person totally committed to education and the children she worked with,” Wright said. “She was always smiling, looking on the bright side of things, and she had the ability to make everyone around her feel good about themselves.”
In 1989, Sealy died suddenly at the age of 59, just two weeks after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Wright taught with Sealy at Atkinson Elementary School in Coweta County and for 20 years thought about the scholarship.
Finally last year, she was financially able to take $1,000 out of her pocket to start things off. But, her sorority, one that Sealy nominated Wright to, volunteered to donate half or $500 annually, making her donation each year $500.
Wright said it was easy to set up a scholarship. All a person needs is someone to remember and a few dollars. She wrote a biography of Sealy and delivered it and the money to the University of West Georgia Foundation.
The Emily Thomasson Sealy Memorial Scholarship is awarded annually to a Coweta resident and upcoming freshman planning to major in education at UWG. To be eligible, students must also have a grade point average of 3.0.
“This scholarship was important to me,” Wright said, “It was something special that we could all do in her memory.”
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