GARRETT – The sidewalks and parking lots are filled with students on their way to class. Students come to college for various reasons. Some students come to college to please their parents, receive financial aid, meet new people and see old friends. Reggie Scott is one of those students hustling on the sidewalk to get to class. Scott came to Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC) to follow his dream s of becoming an educator or social worker. Although Scott is one of those college students, he also deals with Cerebral Palsy and is in a wheelchair.
Scott, age 27, has always pushed himself to achieve. He began college a few months after graduating from Allen Central High School. Since starting college, Scott has handled a full semester class load each semester and currently has 101 credits. Interested in computers, Scott joined and eventually became president of the college’s information technology club. He is no longer president, but still enjoys going to meetings.
Scott began his experience at Big Sandy Community and Technical College in 2008. His goal is to graduate by December 2016.
“My goal is to inspire others young or old, regardless of the roadblocks they must navigate always believe you can achieve,” said Scott. “Set a goal and work toward it. When someone says something negative don’t listen to them.”
Although Reggie is comfortable in a setting like BSCTC, to someone else it may be terrifying. Getting a high school diploma and getting paperwork and financial aid may also be overwhelming and scary. BSCTC has a Director of Disabilities Support Services, which is Janie Beverly.
“Mrs. Beverly has worked diligently with me to ensure I get the paperwork I need, she worked with me creating an individual learning plan,” Scott confided. “If I am struggling with a test, I may receive extra time. If a lesson needs to be modified, every professor I have taken classes under was nothing but nice to me and made every modification I may have needed.”
Two other teachers that have impacted Scott’s life are Lynn Handshoe and Randy Mills.
Handshoe teaches eighth grade at Allen Central Middle School. Scott talked about his experience in her classroom.
She has taken the extra initiative to sit with me and go over problems I am having difficult with,” Scott confided.
Mills was a math instructor at BSCTC. She was recently laid off due to budget cuts and also served as Scott’s advisor. Handshoe and Mills both pushed Scott to do his best and see beyond the wheelchair. They treated Scott with respect and worked with him until he finally got whatever concept they were going over in class.
“We are proud of Reggie, as we are all of our students,” said Dr. Devin Stephenson, President of Big Sandy Community and Technical College said. “Reggie’s determination to finish his, work full time and overcome the obstacles he has faced is inspiring. The transformation of our region begins with our people seizing the opportunity to earn a degree and/or credential.”
Scott works full-time for Life Wireless during the time he is not in class. Life Wireless distributes free cell phones to individuals who may either be on food stamps, have a medical card or be on some kind of government assistance. Scott enjoys meeting new people working for Life Wireless.
Although his calendar is full, Scott tries to make time for his hobby, which is computer repair. He hopes to get married someday and have a family. One thing he wants everyone to do is to set goals, have dreams, and pursue them.
“If someone tries to make life difficult and wants to bring you down, don’t listen to them,” Scott added. “Anything is possible if you believe you can do it. Stay focused and motivated and don’t give up until your goal is achieved.”
Andrea Saddler is a reporter for The Floyd County Times. She can be reached at (606) 886-8506.