Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of Americans have filed for unemployment, leading to the largest increase in unemployment in U.S. history. With so many people losing their jobs and income, many are looking to pursue new educational opportunities to help them find meaningful employment. The goal at WGU is to help people go back to college at an affordable price.
This is why we created the Bright Future Scholarship, focused on helping individuals struggling with the impact of COVID-19 and considering higher education as part of their personal recovery plans.
For military wife Stephanie Napolitino, WGU Nevada has helped her do just that. On Oct. 22, 2020, Stephanie was awarded a $3,000 Bright Future scholarship in a surprise zoom call with WGU Regional Vice President Rick Benbow. When COVID-19 hit, Stephanie was laid off from her marketing research firm, so she felt like it was the perfect time to further her education and continue to pursue a business marketing degree. She had started her degree at a community college but was not able to finish as she had to stay home to care for her two children.
“This scholarship means so much when you are in a financial bind. With COVID-19, I thought this would be a perfect time to expand my education,” said Napolitino. “WGU stood out to me because I was able to do the courses at my own pace and it was more affordable than any of the other options. I am so grateful for WGU, it has been a phenomenal experience.”
Benbow added: “It’s always special to acknowledge the hard work of people who have taken a leap of faith and chosen to go back to school. Stephanie is dedicated and committed, and has persevered throughout her life. She exemplifies everything WGU stands for, so it was an easy choice to give her this scholarship.”
Stephanie is interested in earning her MBA to expand her knowledge on all things marketing. Being given the opportunity to study marketing with WGU, Stephanie wants to maximize her skills and be a valuable resource for others. WGU is proud to help her along the way! Congratulations, Stephanie!