Getting A Head-start On College

March 02, 1995|By TaNoah V. Sterling | TaNoah V. Sterling,Sun Staff Writer

College is still two years away for Chikeva Brown, but she will get a $750 head-start on her expenses from a Nationwide Insurance Co. scholarship to be presented at the Tribute to Women of Color awards luncheon Saturday.

This weekend, the 15-year-old sophomore from Broadneck Senior High School and seven other minority women will receive awards at the Annapolis Holiday Inn in these categories: future leaders, good Samaritan, pathfinder and service to youth.

Corporate sponsors Nationwide Insurance, Anne Arundel Medical Center and William Reese and Sons Mortuary, also will present scholarships.

The Broadneck youth is active in several church and community activities. She has been a member of the Annapolis Children Foundation for 11 years, where she volunteers as an HIV/AIDS trainer to youths in her community.

She also serves as an acolyte, visits the elderly in nursing homes and sings in the choir at Asbury Broadneck United Methodist Church. She said her involvement in so many activities stems from a love of people.

"It makes me feel like I'm accomplishing something," she said. "I feel it brings me closer to God."

Pamela Cowan, a church member who also served on the luncheon planning committee, said she nominated Chikeva because of the young woman's outstanding nature. "Every time I go to her house I see another award on her wall," said Ms. Cowan. When the committee asked for scholarship nominations, didn't even have to think about it. She just popped into my head."

Chikeva has maintained a 3.0 grade point average in school, despite having to deal with her mother's death last July. Though that was a difficult time, she said, she had to be a role model for her two younger sisters.

"It didn't stop me from doing the things I did," she said. "I know I have to be strong. I can't sit in deep depression."

Nancy Kess, a second cousin who has reared Chikeva since she was a baby, said she is glad the young woman has such a positive outlook on life.

"I'm very proud of her," she said.

Chikeva said the scholarship money will go into the bank, where it will stay until she is ready to attend college. She wants to go to Howard University in Washington or to Morgan State University in Baltimore.

She hopes to become an accountant, but even more than that she wants to return to Annapolis after college and be a role model for the city's youth.

"You come back and show people that you can do right and still be successful," she said. "I want to tell somebody that they can do it too."

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