STAR Program Education Celebration - April 12, 2017!



Click Here to View 2017 Education Celebration Booklet
and Full List of STAR Students & STAR Teachers


STAR Student Program Honors 285 Scholars -
Most Ever in Program History

(From Left) Kelly Gene Cook, Sr. Charitable Foundation, Inc. Executive Director Katy Pacelli; TOP ALL-STAR Scholar Andy Zhao, and his STAR Teacher Kishan Patel; Suzie Welch, STAR Teacher of 1st Runner Up Allen Yang Huang; 2nd Runner Up Benjamin W. Robertson and his STAR Teacher David Ollar; and M.B. Swayze Foundation Chair Anthony Wilson of Mississippi Power.

Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science student Andy Zhao was recently named Mississippi's TOP ALL-STAR Scholar at the 52nd Annual Education Celebration, held by the Mississippi Economic Council's M.B. Swayze Foundation. Zhao scored a perfect 36 composite score on the American College Test (ACT) with perfect combined scores of 144, and held an average of 98.26 GPA. A $24,000 scholarship provided by the Kelly Gene Cook, Sr. Charitable Foundation, Inc. was presented to Zhao by Katy Pacelli, Executive Director of the Foundation.

Each STAR Student is asked to designate a STAR Teacher - the teacher who has made the greatest contribution to the student's scholastic achievement. Zhao designated Kishan Patel of Columbus as his STAR Teacher.

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285 STAR Students and their STAR Teachers were recognized by MEC's M.B. Swayze Foundation at the 2017 Education Celebration. Each STAR student received a medallion, lapel pin and certificate in recognition of their achievements.

Allen Yang Huang, an Oak Grove High School student, has been named 1st Runner-Up and will receive a $20,000 Kelly Gene Cook, Sr. Charitable Foundation, Inc. Scholarship. Huang designated Suzie Welch of Purvis as his STAR Teacher.

Benjamin W. Roberson a Jackson Preparatory School student has been named 2nd Second Runner-Up and will receive a $16,000 Kelly Gene Cook, Sr. Charitable Foundation, Inc. Scholarship. Roberson designated P. David Ollar of Pearl as his STAR Teacher.

One-time scholarship awards of $1,000 are provided to the remaining top 17 ALL-STAR Scholars. STAR Teachers designated by the top three ALL-STAR Scholars receive a $1,000 award. The remaining 17 All-STAR Teachers will each receive a $500 award. The Kelly Gene Cook Sr. Charitable Foundation, Inc. provided $88,500 in scholarships and awards to STAR Students and STAR Teachers during the celebration. The Foundation has provided over $1.3 million dollars in scholarships for 21 years to STAR Students and STAR Teachers.

vickie real web

Vickie Powell
Vice President,
Foundation Programs
Direct Number: 601-969-4418
Cell Phone: 601-500-1778
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.