Meet the talented Bullitt Central and Bullitt Advanced Math and Science (BAMS) Program students selected to participate in this summer’s Kentucky Governor’s Scholars (GSP) Program: Sara Eversole, Emma Maddox, Macy French and Ernest Walls, IV.
Sara was in the sixth grade at The Discovery School located at Hebron Middle School when she learned about GSP.
“I knew then that I was going to apply,” said the 17 year-old daughter of Melissa and Paul Eversole. “My mom worked at North Bullitt High School so she told me all about it and it just sounded like an amazing experience and a big honor. Because of this, it’s been my goal throughout high school to be accepted into the program, so I’m so excited that I have been.”
Sara found out she was selected as she was driving home from her sister’s house.
“My counselor called me and I remember the first thing I said after she told me was ‘no way!’ I then immediately called my mom to tell her the good news,” she said.
She feels the strongest part of her application was, “Definitely the activities section. I have a ton of activities and I focused a lot on that section and made sure to describe every activity and what I’ve gained from it in full detail.”
GSP participants spend five weeks of their summer on a Kentucky college campus participating in a highly structured curriculum.
The primary motivator for Sara is making new friends as well as seeing what it will be like to live in dorms before she departs for college.
Since Bullitt Central offers multiple difficult courses and course rigor is part of the GSP application, Sara feels BC has given her the opportunity to get a few extra points on her application from that alone.
“There are also lots of different activities that I am able to participate in at BC so that helped my application as well,” she said.
Knowing what a great experience GSP will be has Sara excited about encouraging next year’s juniors to apply.
“GSP opens a lot of doors when applying to college,” she said.
During the school year, Sara took AP Biology, AP US History, EDTP 215 (University of Louisville Dual Credit Teaching and Learning Course), Mathematical Strategies (Morehead State University Dual Credit Course), Precalculus, Ethical Leadership and was involved in basketball, tennis, Beta Club, National Honors Society, Lady Leaders, Literary Club, Technology Student Association and the Prom Committee
Among honors earned are The Louisville Zoo Youth Award, Historian of Beta Club, President of Technology Student Association, Academic Allstate every year for basketball and winning district tournament in basketball.
Sara aspires to be a high school guidance counselor or possibly go into politics.
“I’ve always thought about the possibility of one day being a senator,” she smiled.
Past and present circumstances combined to propel Emma’s successful application.
“My cousin applied for GSP and loved the program and the experience,” she said. “She also appreciated the scholarship opportunities when selecting a school. I don’t think it was my classes as much as the people at BC who helped me prepare. Both my counselors and the seniors who had attended GSP last summer were enthusiastic and very helpful to us all while applying and going through the GSP process. I would have to give a special thanks to Savannah Price, she went above and beyond to make sure we could all go into the application confidently, and continuously inspired us to try our hardest to earn a spot in the program.”
Emma described her GSP application as quite long, ending up around 25-30 pages, and felt the strongest area was probably the essay.
“As I am a confident writer, I chose a prompt that I connected,” she said.
Emma received a letter along with a message from her counselor with the good news and the first person to learn was her Mom.
“We were both very excited and proud that I had earned a spot in the program,” she smiled.
Emma said she is hoping to experience college life and meet new people in a new setting that will be a lot of fun.
“I also hope I can use this program to help me with college expenses and choosing a school to attend next year,” she affirmed. “If the program is as great as I’ve heard it to be, I would certainly urge others to apply for the opportunity.”
Her daily schedule is AP US History, Pre AP Chemistry, Pre-Calculus, AP Language and Composition, Culinary 2, Spanish 2, and AP Studio Art and her extracurriculars are Beta Club, National Honors Society, Varsity Tennis, and Literary Club.
The 17 year-old daughter of Amy and Marcus McDowell and Troy Maddox is a 2017 Bullitt County Partners in Prevention Very Important Partner (VIP), earned the Art 2 award in 2019, her Red Ribbon Poster placed 1st in 2019, 1st place in the Kentucky State Beta Fine Arts Competition, AP Scholar Award, and the Dynamic Duo Award in Varsity Tennis.
Although assigned to Bullitt Central, Macy is a student in the Bullitt Advanced Math and Science (BAMS) Program.
“The classes I’ve taken as part of the BAMS program were a great help in preparing me to apply, as well as the support of my teachers in the program, Stephanie Lewis and Chip Davidson,” she acknowledged. “The opportunity to be a full-time college student at Jefferson Community and Technical College (JCTC) was also a great advantage when it was time to complete my application.”
Attention to application detail was Macy’s mission and she spent a lot of time on every section.
“I really wanted to communicate all of the qualities that make me, me,” she reflected. “I think the section that convinced the screeners to choose me was probably my service section. It was in this section that I was able to talk about some of the volunteer work I do that I’m extremely passionate about.”
The 17 year-old daughter of Cindi and Mackie French said they presented a letter from GSP and watched her anxiously open it.
“In the time since I had sent my application in, I had honestly convinced myself I wasn’t going to get in,” Macy bemoaned. “Reading the ‘congratulations’ at the top of the letter was like a weight being lifted. I was very excited. The first people I told were my three best friends, and then my teachers, Mr. Davidson, and Mrs. Lewis.”
Courses such as Astronomy, Intro to the Humanities, Writing I, Pre-Calculus, and Psychology at JCTC are well received on a GSP application and Macy is looking forward to the many exciting adventures awaiting her.
“The scholarship opportunities, as well as the many positive stories I have heard from past alumni, were some,” she said. “The biggest inspiration, however, was the opportunity GSP offers to learn solely for the sake of learning. I hope that this experience leads to new friendships and great memories. I hope that this experience helps to lead me to wherever I’m supposed to be.”
She will encourage next year’s juniors to be on the lookout for the GSP application.
“Even if you don’t get in, filling out the application teaches you a lot about how to write professionally, as well as about who you are in general,” she said.
Macy is a member of Bullitt Central’s Archery team and National Honors Society, as well as the Riverview Opportunity Center Beta Club.
She also helps coach both Nichols Elementary and Bullitt Lick Middle School’s archery teams and volunteer frequently at Nichols Elementary School.
Macy is still deciding on what I want to do in life nut knows she wants to do something involving education and helping kids.
Ernest Walls IV
Ernest wanted his GSP application to highlight how he leads in all aspects of what he does.
“My strongest portion was the community recommendation letter,” he pointed out. “My soccer coach wrote mine and I spent almost every day with him so he was able to see all sides of me. I think this honest transparent recommendation was able to show that I truly do lead and was best fit to be a Scholar.”
He was initially inspired to apply by other people he saw experience GSP.
“They talked about how much they enjoyed the time they spent there and how much it helped them,” he recalled. “I hope to get new friends that I normally wouldn’t get the chance to meet.”
Ernest learned of his GSP acceptance from counselor Emily Cottongim.
“I was in disbelief and first told my mom,” said the 17 year-old son of Ray and Kristina Walls.
Ernest feels Bullitt Central’s classes prepared him because “They helped me with the writing portion. I also think it helped that I had multiple AP classes to strengthen my application.”
His class schedule is composed of AP Language and Composition, AP US History, Pre-Cal, Digital Electronics (Engineering), Entrepreneurship, Spanish 2 and Pre-AP Chemistry along with extracurriculars such coaching archery at Cedar Grove Elementary School, shoot archery for BC, Soccer (in the fall) and Beta Club.
Ernest expressed appreciation to several individuals such as archery coaches, Gera and Dusty Metcalf. “They helped me so much in archery which has improved my leadership and earned many awards that I think helped strengthen my application a lot. Ms. Terry, for helping me learn how to write better and helping me throughout the application process when I had any questions. All of my friends who helped me get it done. Coach Hoben for helping me develop my leadership when a lot of stress was put on me and helped me make my best strides as a player in soccer and as a person. My parents for helping me get it done by reviewing it and keeping me on track so I got the application done on time,” he said.
Next school year, Ernest looks forward to informing fellow students about GSP.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for students to realize a few things such as if they want to go to college, if they want to stay on campus, and the size of the college,” he said.
Ernest hopes to own his family company, Ray Walls Excavating.
“I am to the University of Louisville for Civil Engineering before I start working with my dad,” he said.