Wagoner earns PDCCC scholarship

Published 8:32 pm Saturday, July 20, 2013

College was always in the plan for Lauren Wagoner of Eure, N.C.

Although she was accepted to a four-year institution, Paul D. Camp Community College became a more practical choice after the birth of her daughter, Natalie Heckenlaible, now 18 months.

Lauren Wagoner recently won the 2013 Paul D. Camp Community College J. Philip Bain Jr. Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship. She plans to pursue a career in physical therapy.

Lauren Wagoner recently won the 2013 Paul D. Camp Community College J. Philip Bain Jr. Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship. She plans to pursue a career in physical therapy.

“I had to think more realistically about it,” she said. “I can complete my associate degree in two years. Then I can work and make money while I complete my bachelor’s degree. Since I am a new mom, this is a better option for me and my family in the long run.”

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Wagoner was selected as the recipient of the 2013 Paul D. Camp Community College J. Philip Bain Jr. Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship.

A Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship winner is selected from each of the 23 institutions in Virginia’s Community College System. The scholarship, annually named at each school for the recipient of the Chancellor’s Leadership in Philanthropy Award, may be used on any campus within the VCCS. This year, it will provide a $3,500 scholarship for a full year of tuition, books and fees.

Wagoner, who recently graduated with honors from Gates County High School, will begin her studies in nursing this fall.

“I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do,” she said. “But after becoming a member of HOSA (Future Health Professionals, formerly Health Occupations Students of America), I took my first class in anatomy. I really liked it and was interested in physical therapy.”

She volunteered at Sentara Obici Hospital through its Junior Volunteer Program and worked in the physical therapy, and labor and delivery departments. She has since completed the certification for nursing assistant.

In addition to HOSA, Wagoner has served as senior vice president of the Student Government Association, secretary of the Beta Club, and took on lead roles in theater productions with the Playmakers Drama Club. She played recreational, and junior and varsity softball and volleyball. She was also part of a travel ball team for three years. She has served as a counselor for 4-H Horse Camp for the past five summers.

Wagoner is excited about her scholarship and credits her family and fiancé, Craig Heckenlaible, with providing much support.

“They have always encouraged me, and being a mother adds to my determination to do my best in college,” she said.

As a Commonwealth Legacy scholar, Wagoner will mentor future scholarship recipients and participate in statewide events, such as the Student Leadership Conference, scheduled for fall.

She also will be recognized, along with other scholars throughout the state, during the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education luncheon on Nov. 19 in Richmond.