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First recipient selected for Vicky Slusser Scholarship

East Rowan High School graduate Ana Carla Betancourt is the first winner of the Vicky Slusser Scholarship sponsored by Communities in Schools of Rowan County. The award is $500.

The scholarship, which was created this year, is named in honor of Slusser, who retired in June after 17 years of service to Communities in Schools of Rowan County. The scholarship recognizes a graduating senior from a Rowan-Salisbury school who has been helped by Communities in Schools to succeed in school and graduate.

Betancourt is a 2015 honor graduate of East Rowan High School, and she plans to attend Appalachian State University in the fall to major in forensic anthropology. She was served by Communities in Schools when she attended Granite Quarry Elementary School.

At East Rowan High School, Betancourt was a member of volleyball, swimming and track teams; participated in Junior Civitans, Spanish Club, weightlifting and the Broadway Revue. Betancourt attends Maranatha Bible Church where she assists with vacation Bible school and the church nursery.

“I am grateful for CIS,” says Betancourt. “I am grateful for all its support. I am grateful that because of CIS, I will be fulfilling a dream, not only for me but for my family. I am graduating East Rowan High School … attending Appalachian State University… and will be the first in my family to gain a college education.”

Betancourt is the daughter of Ana Luisa Alvarez and Carlos Betancourt of Salisbury.

Communities in Schools is the nation’s largest dropout prevention organization. The mission of CIS is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.

Communities in Schools of Rowan County serves nearly 4,000 students in Koontz, Hanford-Dole, Isenberg, North Rowan and Overton elementary schools and Knox and North Rowan middle schools.

Communities in Schools is a  member agency of United Way of Rowan County.

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