Rocky Mountain Power Supports First-Generation Students

Published: August 09, 2019 | Author: Kenzie Lundberg | Read Time: 2 minutes

students look at tablet outsideWith the goal to help first-generation students, the Rocky Mountain Power Foundation recently awarded Southern Utah University $10,000 in student scholarships for the 2019-2020 academic year.

The RMP Foundation has supported SUU student scholarships for 13 years with a primary focus on first-generation students. During this time, these scholarships have helped 81 students be the first in their family to pursue a dream of obtaining a college degree. 

As a first-generation nursing student at SUU, Natalie Barlow understands the challenges that these students face. 

Being a first-generation student means you don’t have a paved road to follow,” said Barlow. “It doesn’t mean you don’t have support, but how can one be a strength when they don’t know what you need because they don’t know what it takes.”

Students are eligible for the scholarship after meeting the following criteria. They must be enrolled at SUU and a first-generation student, meaning neither parent has a college degree. They must have a minimum 3.00 grade point average and demonstrate a financial need. Students are also likely to be from a rural community within the six-state region served by Rocky Mountain Power and its subsidiaries.

Students, like Barlow, may also face other challenges. As a single mother, the financial support of the scholarship enabled her to work part-time and make fewer sacrifices when it came to spending time with her children.

“I have had huge obstacles to face while being a full-time mom, working to support my family, and trying to go back to school,” said Barlow. “I think the biggest boost I got from this scholarship was that there was someone out there that KNEW the obstacles I had to overcome, and they cared enough to help. I found so much courage from this, and I can’t say thank you enough.”

Barlow plans to give back to the community by becoming a nurse and working for a cause she has always loved, caring for other people. Through her experience, Barlow has inspired her oldest daughter to pursue a college education earlier in life. Barlow is looking forward to supporting her daughter’s academic journey. 

The Rocky Mountain Power Foundation is one of the largest utility-endowed foundations in the United States. The foundation was created in 1988 by PacifiCorp, an electric utility serving 1.8 million customers in six Western states as Rocky Mountain Power (Utah, Wyoming, and Idaho) and Pacific Power (Oregon, Washington and California). The foundation’s mission, through charitable investments, is to support the growth and vitality of the communities served by Rocky Mountain Power and Pacific Power.

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