Cody Sartorius, a math major at Walters State, could actually teach a class in “scholarship management.”
The sophomore is technically being paid to attend Walters State Community College – with the extra scholarship dollars being set aside for use after he transfers to the University of Tennessee.
Sartorius has received the Tennessee Hope Lottery scholarship, a Walters State Promise Scholarship and a Dual Enrollment Scholarship. He has also received a Walters State Foundation Presidential Scholarship, reserved for top graduates of area high schools. He added scholarships from grocer associations in Tennessee and Kentucky through his job.
The Walters State Promise scholarship is designed to attract top academic achievers to Walters State. It pays for expenses related to education, including textbooks and travel expenses, which aren’t covered by the Tennessee Promise and Hope scholarships.
While Tennessee Promise has expanded the number of students attending Walters State tuition-free, many students are able to attend college practically expense-free with multiple scholarships.
“Every Walters State student does not receive a scholarship, but many do receive multiple scholarships and many combine scholarships with other financial aid sources,” said Machela Lovell, financial aid coordinator at Walters State.
Lovell advises students to meet financial aid deadlines. The Walters State Scholarship application is due by March 31 and the FAFSA deadline is Jan. 17 for Tennessee Promise recipients.
“One of the reasons I came to Walters State is definitely affordability,” Sartorius said. “I also knew that at Walters State I would get to know my teachers one-on-one and be better prepared for the university.”
Another attraction for the first-generation college student was knowing that the classes he took at Walters State would transfer to a four-year university.
“A lot of students don’t know about the Tennessee Transfer Pathways program. It guarantees that all of my credits from this college will transfer to a university.”
Teachers are among the most inspirational forces for Sartorius. It was his high school calculus teacher who encouraged him to consider teaching math. He plans on going straight through and earning a master’s degree at UT before beginning a career teaching math in public schools.
Over 5,900 credit and 4,000 non-credit students attend Walters State. The college has campuses in Morristown, Greeneville, Sevierville and Tazewell. It offers over 100 associate degrees and technical certificates. Visit Walters State’s website at ws.edu.