Three years ago, enrolling in college was the furthest thing from Hannah Beebe’s mind.
But the Jordan High senior has learned a few things about perseverance. Your past doesn’t define you. Luck and raw talent will only take you so far. The key to getting where you want to go is working hard, treating setbacks as learning opportunities, and never giving up. “For a huge part of my life, I let my family’s struggles define who I was. Now I accept that I am my own person,” says the 18-year-old.
This summer, Hannah will proudly join her peers on the commencement stage to receive her diploma. Next stop: Utah State University where she intends to pursue a degree in education.
“I want to teach and help other students in similar situations get through high school,” she says. “Despite what cards you’ve been dealt in life, we should always be able to have the tools to persevere through it.”
For her persistence in the face of adversity, Beebe was chosen to receive the Canyons Education Foundation’s premier $2,500 Rising Star Scholarship at the Foundation’s eighth annual Spring Gala on Thursday, April 18. In all, the Foundation awarded $10,000 in college scholarships to seven deserving students. Emceeing this year’s event was Good4Utah’s morning show host Nicea DeGering whose children attend Canyons District schools.
The Foundation, a non-profit arm of the District, works with community leaders and businesses to secure resources to fuel innovation in the classroom and help students realize their dreams. This year’s scholarship winners were chosen for their fortitude and courage in overcoming significant obstacles to achieving their college and career goals.
Beebe says her interest in education was inspired by the enduring support of the trusted adults she encountered at school, from her English teacher Suzanne McDougal who encouraged her to write, to the guidance of her school counselor Bob Spears. “[Mr. Spears] never pitied me and always knew I could push beyond whatever I was dealing with,” she says.
Indeed, what Spears saw in Hannah was ingenuity and strength. “She’s had ups and downs but has never given up. She’s probably one of the most resilient students I’ve seen come through Jordan,” he says.
Photos from the event can be uploaded below. Congratulations to Beebe and the following Bright Star Scholarship winners:
- Alta High: Madison DeMercy
- Brighton High: Alex Hansen
- Corner Canyon High: Alejandro Jimenez
- Diamond Ridge High: Natalie Garcia
- Hillcrest High: Adison Gordon
- Jordan High: Alondra Bruno
[flickrset=72157680089146518″ >Click here to view photos