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Last updated: August 05. 2014 12:48PM - 381 Views
Special to Civitas Media



Lonnie Lawson, left, president and CEO of The Center for Rural Development, and Delaney Stephens, community liaison and youth programs coordinator for The Center, present 2014 Rogers Scholars graduate Jerry “Blake” Blevins of Harlan with a certificate of achievement for completing the program. Blake, 16, is a junior at Harlan County High School.
Lonnie Lawson, left, president and CEO of The Center for Rural Development, and Delaney Stephens, community liaison and youth programs coordinator for The Center, present 2014 Rogers Scholars graduate Jerry “Blake” Blevins of Harlan with a certificate of achievement for completing the program. Blake, 16, is a junior at Harlan County High School.
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Harlan County High School student Jerry “Blake” Blevins graduated from The Center for Rural Development’s Rogers Scholars program this summer.


Rogers Scholars is an intensive one-week summer leadership program that provides opportunities for high school students in southern and eastern Kentucky to receive the skills they need to become the region’s next generation of business and entrepreneurial leaders. Seventeen colleges and universities partner with The Center to offer exclusive college scholarships to Rogers Scholars graduates.


“The Rogers Scholars program changed my life by introducing me to a wealth of people who have had an impact on me,” said Blake, 16, a junior at HCHS. “Without Rogers Scholars, I may not have been exposed to so many prominent examples of leadership. I plan to implement the leadership skills I have gained and use them to better our region.”


Sixty students from 45 Kentucky counties graduated this summer from the 2014 Class of Rogers Scholars. The program was held on the campus of Lindsey Wilson College in South Central Kentucky in Adair County.


“I have high hopes for all of our Rogers Scholars graduates as they return to their hometowns in Southern and Eastern Kentucky,” said Delaney Stephens, community liaison and youth programs coordinator for The Center. “This has been an exceptional group of young leaders. There is no limit to what these Scholars can do, and I look forward to seeing them develop into future business and civic leaders this region needs.”


Rogers Scholars — The Center’s flagship youth program — was established in 1998 as an action step toward meeting Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers’ goal that “no young person should have to leave home to find his or her future.”


The program instills in Rogers Scholars graduates a commitment to the region and encourages them to return to the area after graduating college to build their professional careers. Each graduate must complete a community service project within one year from graduating from Rogers Scholars.


For more information about the Rogers Scholars program, call 606-677-6000, email youth@centertech.com or visit www.centeryouthprograms.com.


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