Three from Northeast State in running for undergraduate transfer scholarship

Rick Wagner • Jan 25, 2020 at 2:30 PM

LANSDOWNE, Va. — Three Northeast State Community College students are semifinalists for a scholarship from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation to continue to a four-year school.

Jonathan Barrett, Tuan Nguyen and Kaitlyn Stout were this year’s selected semifinalists from the Blountville-based school. They are among 456 semifinalists chosen from a pool of nearly 1,500 applicants attending 311 community colleges in 45 states and the District of Columbia.

Nguyen has been named one of eight Achieving the Dream (ATD) 2020 DREAM Scholars, selected from community college students across the United States through the ATD Network.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation announced Jan. 23 the semifinalists for its Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship.Through this award, the foundation supports high-achieving community college students as they transfer to some of the best four-year institutions in the country to complete their bachelor’s degrees.

“Year after year, we are impressed by the incredible talent and resolve of community college students,” said Seppy Basili, executive director of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. “We are proud to recognize this outstanding group of semifinalists for their academic achievement.”

The Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship recipients will be announced in April. Selected scholars will receive financial support for up to three years, comprehensive educational advising and the chance to connect with fellow Cooke Scholars.

A first-generation college student and the son of immigrants, Nguyen enrolled at NSCC through the Tennessee Reconnect scholarship. He is an Honors Program student and member of Alpha Iota Chi chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society. Nguyen serves as Honors-in-Action chair for the chapter.

Nguyen has made the President’s List in consecutive semesters while attending NSCC. A student named to the President’s List must complete a semester with a minimum 12 hours of college-level credit and a grade point average of 4.0.

Stout is a Pearson Scholar and finalist for the Phi Theta Kappa All-USA Academic Team. She is also regional vice president of the East for the East Tennessee Region of Phi Theta Kappa. The Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education awards 10 scholarships to Phi Theta Kappa members enrolled in community college and planning to continue their education at a four-year institution.

Barrett is a Phi Theta Kappa All-Tennessee Scholar. He was a member of the President’s List for Fall 2019. Students named to the President’s List must complete a semester with a minimum 12 hours of college-level credit and a grade point average of 4.0.

Nguyen and Stout were also members of the Fall 2019 President’s List.


Cooke Transfer Scholars are selected based on their exceptional academic ability and achievement, financial need, persistence, service to others and leadership. They must be currently enrolled community college students or recent graduates living in the United States.

A list of this year’s Cooke Transfer Scholar semifinalists, their community colleges and the states they represent is online at www.jkcf.org/, as is information about the foundation and its other programs.

The foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Since 2000, it has awarded more than $200 million in scholarships to more than 2,700 students from eighth grade through graduate school, along with comprehensive educational advising and other support services. The foundation also has provided $110 million in grants to organizations that serve such students, according to a news release from the foundation and its website.