When Michael Scroggs, known affectionately by friends and family as Corey, graduates from Tri-County Community College in May, he will be the first in his family to do so.
In a move decided by faculty and staff, Scroggs was recently selected as Tri-County Community College’s 2017 nominee for the statewide Dallas Herring Achievement Award, which is bestowed annually upon a current or former student who best embodies Herring’s philosophy of “taking people where they are and carrying them as far as they can go.”
“Honestly, being the first person in my family to go to college was a major challenge for me,” the 24-year-old Andrews native said. “I had no one to set the precedent of how to register for classes, let alone how to pay for those classes. I had to set that precedent for myself.”
Scroggs originally took Welding classes in 2011 before deciding his heart lay elsewhere.
“I worked in retail for several years,” he said. “Then one day I woke up and realized I didn’t want to be stuck in a dead end job for the rest of my life.”
Since 2015, Scroggs has taken the course load of a full-time student, while simultaneously working a full-time job during the sunrise shift at Harrah’s Valley River Casino.
“I basically work 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., then I come to school,” he said. “It can be really hard, especially since this semester I’m taking 21 credit hours so I can finish by May.”
At Tri-County Community College, Scroggs said he found the confidence to pursue his true passion: sports journalism.
“I have always loved sports — I played on various teams all throughout my life,” Scroggs said. “I would love to eventually go into broadcast work for sports communication.”
For Scroggs, coming to Tri-County Community College meant discovering his potential and the opportunity to better his life and pursue his dreams.
“Without instructors like Kathy Temple, who has been my backbone in finishing my degree, I wouldn’t have believed in myself to be able to pursue a higher education,” Scroggs said. “When you come from my background, you honestly believe you will be stuck in a dead-end job for the rest of your life, and there’s very little you can do to change that.”
Beginning in Fall 2017, Scroggs will transfer into Western Carolina University with his associate’s in arts to complete a bachelors degree in communication to pursue his dream of working in sports broadcasting.
“It’s almost hard to believe I’m almost finished here,” Scroggs said. “But it’s also really exciting at the same time. I’m looking forward to moving on to the next step in my educational journey, which I wouldn’t have believed was possible a couple of years ago. I really have to thank my family, teachers, and my girlfriend for supporting me and helping me achieve such success in my college education.”
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