Blake Jones of New Orleans, Louisiana, is the recipient of the CSU Knight Scholarship. Jones is the dean of students at Young Audiences Charter School. His goal within the next five years is to become a head coach for a collegiate men’s basketball team.
“Coaching basketball is my true passion,” he said. “Obtaining my bachelor’s degree will increase my chances of being hired as a head collegiate coach. I want to be a role model for my current and future players and show that no matter what adversities come your way, you can overcome anything with drive and determination.”
Jones is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership at CSU.
Christopher Gastgeb of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, has been awarded the CSX Moving Forward Scholarship. He is an engineer who has worked in the railroad industry for over 19 years.
“I want to expand my knowledge to open up future opportunities within the industry. I would like to finish my career in the rail industry feeling I put in my best effort and not leave any opportunities out there.”
Gastgeb says he is looking to pursue a degree at CSU that will allow him to learn more about safety within his field.
“Using the education I have and furthering it through this university and its scholarship program, I hope to learn more about the industry I have put so much time in,” he said. “I hope to use this scholarship to further my education to give me the opportunity that will not only open doors for me to further my career, but to spend more time at home watching my children grow.”
Ryan Lockwood of Conroe, Texas, has received a CSU Learning Partner Scholarship with Aldine Fire and Rescue. His goal is to be the district fire chief within his department and become a colligate-level teacher.
“Accomplishing my degree would help me to become a teacher and pass on my knowledge and skills to the students that are wanting to become firefighters,” he said. “Being able to pass on the skills and knowledge to these students will help bring a stronger workforce that helps to protect and provide excellent customer service to their communities.”
With this scholarship, Lockwood plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in fire administration at CSU.
“I have been slowly working for my degree over the last 16 plus years,” he said. “I have made it a priority to finish up my degree to show my four children that even though it can take many more years to complete your degree, that it is possible. Receiving this scholarship would help me to complete my degree faster than expected and give me more time to spend with my family as well as open more promotional opportunities for myself to provide more for them.”
To learn more about Columbia Southern University’s scholarships, visit ColumbiaSouthern.edu/Scholarships.