At Direct Energy, we are committed not only to helping people become smart energy consumers, but also to giving back in our community. Each year, Direct Energy gives $10,000 in college scholarships to remarkable students who have shown that they Live Brighter within their own communities.
We are excited to announce the winners of the 2017 Live Brighter Scholarship:
- First place: Michelle Edgar
- Second place: Albert Appouh
- Third place: Jon Henry Cowart
After her girls’ golf team won first place at a tournament, Michelle noticed the medals they received had the depiction of a young boy golfing. To her, this was a symbol for the gender gaps in golf: boys’ teams have more coaches, receive better equipment and practice grounds, and do not have to worry about practices conflicting with their schedules. As there are no scholarships available at her school, she decided to start a sports video production company to help raise money for equipment, training, tuition and other expenses. She created a video for her team banquet that brought light to gender bias experiences of veteran women golfers and her own team, which influenced her coach to help make changes.
Throughout his education, Albert has been heavily involved in helping others receive a college education and prepare for post-graduation. He provided and helped raise funds for tutoring and mentoring local students, particularly those pursuing the STEM field. He helped many students pass the GED and become the first in their families to attend college. He also led seminars to help students win scholarships and receive employment opportunities. In his broader community, Albert helped people overcome adversity through counseling and founding Newark Cares, an organization that raises public awareness of issues facing Newark Citizens. He advocates for awareness of minority rights, LGBTQ rights and mental health.
Jon Henry Cowart
Jon was kayaking with his dad down Big Elk Creek in Pennsylvania when he noticed several trees in the area were marked to be cut down. After further investigation he found out the estate holders were trying to sell the land and had decided to sell the trees for lumber. Jon set up a fundraiser in his community, bought the land and created “Creekside Preserve.” With the help of his friends and family he created an orchard, which will help produce fruit and nuts for their local food bank. With a group of volunteers, Jon also created hiking trails. He plans to provide more trails, camping locations and other features for the public to enjoy.
Thank you to everyone who applied to our 2017 Live Brighter Scholarship! We are inspired by everything you do in your communities. We wish you the best of luck in your education and hope that you will keep doing amazing things!
Congratulations to our 2017 Live Brighter Scholarship winners!