Support Early Aspirations in Somerset County

Empower our youth to build a brighter future

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Empower our youth to build a brighter future

Aspirations and a brighter future.

The longer I travel throughout the state of Maine talking with students about their opportunities in education, the more I recognize the importance of aspirations. Aspirations are what keeps a student motivated to learn and to improve his or her potential and ability and future opportunities. Aspirations are what moves a community forward, economically and culturally.

Many years talking with high school students about their opportunities beyond high school convinced me that if we are serious about raising aspirations to build a brighter future for the student and for the community, we must start talking with students long before high school. If they have no aspirations heading into high school, it is not a great experience for anyone.

Since 2012. the schools and communities of Skowhegan, Canaan, Norridgewock, Smithfield, and Mercer have recognized the effort and aspirations of 278 students in grades 3 - 6 by awarding them Somerset Future of Maine College Aspirations Scholarships and celebrating them in the community.

I am always impressed by the aspirations and the potential of the young students in your schools. You have many students with high aspirations and tremendous potential in your elementary schools. Rural Maine often looks for solutions from elsewhere – the dream that Augusta or Washington, DC, or Amazon will make their community great again. It only leads to disappointment. I am convinced that the best hope for a brighter future is sitting right there in a classroom full of early aspirations. The big question is whether or not we will nurture these aspirations, or let them fade. They don't last forever on their own.

Please support the future of your communities . . . and some great kids!

Bob Stuart

Director, Maine College Circle