Eliza Abston, a rising senior at Central Magnet School, has been named a winner of the 2022 Carson Scholarship. Abston’s secret to winning the scholarship as a junior — community service. Lots of it.
For the year, Abston has logged nearly 120 hours of community service. “I volunteer a lot at my church to experience community here,” Abston said. “I got my hours for the Carson Scholarship because I just regularly serve with kids.”
Abston has also spent time working for non-profits: packing rice boxes, volunteering to work childcare at her local church, and helping local community members through Feed America First. “I realized that these volunteering hours Central asks us to do are not just requirements — they can also be opportunities,” Abston said.
She discovered the Carson Scholarship through CMS Assistant Principal Allen Nichols, who asked her to write about her experience as a kindergarten teacher at church and volunteer work.
The Carson Scholars Fund awards $1,000 in college scholarships to students in grades 4-11 who excel academically and are dedicated to community service and making an impact.
Dr. Ben and Candy Carson created the fund as a way to help fund education in the United States. Dr. Carson is a retired neurosurgeon and former United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. “I wanted to apply,” Abston said, “then I realized I can write in my community service story — how I started to see service as an opportunity.”
For Abston’s senior year, she plans to keep up the effort of completing community service and applying to scholarships. She will also be completing her senior thesis on something business related, such as how small businesses were impacted by COVID-19. “I want to continue my pursuit of these extracurriculars and finish my last year of high school strong. I do plan on applying to all the scholarships open to senior.”
After high school Abston plans to pursue a degree business administration or law.