Asbury University President Dr. Sandra C. Gray, fifth from left, joins U.S. Congressman Harold "Hal" Rogers (KY-05), Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO of The Center, and Rogers Scholars graduates to announce a newly formed partnership with the Rogers Scholars program

Starting with the 2013 graduating class of Rogers Scholars, Asbury University is offering exclusive college scholarships for new and future graduates of The Center for Rural Development’s Rogers Scholars youth leadership program.

Asbury University President Dr. Sandra C. Gray, joined by U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05) and Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO of The Center, announced a newly formed partnership with the Rogers Scholars program at a press conference on Friday, June 7, at The Center in Somerset.

Asbury University, an independent, Christian liberal arts college located in Wilmore, Ky., is the 18th school to make scholarship offers available to graduates who successfully complete the Rogers Scholars youth leadership program.

“It is an honor for us at Asbury University to partner with The Center for Rural Development to help further the higher education of our high school juniors of Eastern Kentucky,” said Gray. “We see Rogers Scholarships as a great means to assist young Kentuckians to build character and earning potential to better themselves and our commonwealth.”

Rogers Scholars—The Center’s flagship youth program—was established in 1998 as an action step toward meeting Congressman Rogers’ goal that “no young person should have to leave home to find his or her future.”

“Rogers Scholars are building a tremendous reputation of success in and out of the classroom, which has garnered the attention of the best post-secondary institutions in the commonwealth, like Asbury University,” said Rogers. “I applaud the overwhelming support offered by our local colleges and universities to promote our best homegrown students and prepare them for great opportunities and successful careers in the years to come.”

“I applaud President Gray and Asbury University for making a commitment to the youth of Southern and Eastern Kentucky through the Rogers Scholars youth leadership program,” added Lawson. “The scholarships awarded by Asbury University will provide a great incentive for the region’s youth to continue their education in a place where they call home.”

Rogers Scholars, an intensive one-week summer session, provides leadership and scholarship opportunities for rising high school juniors within The Center’s 45-county primary service area in Southern and Eastern Kentucky.

The program builds community leaders and encourages high school students to return to the region after graduating college to start their professional careers.

“Asbury University realizes the exceptional potential Rogers Scholars graduates show, and their commitment to providing scholarships to these young leaders proves just that,” said Delaney Stephens, youth programs coordinator and community liaison for The Center. “The Center is proud to have Asbury as the newest partner of the Rogers Scholars program, and we thank President Gray and the university for investing in the future of these young people.”

For more information about Rogers Scholars, contact Delaney Stephens at 606-677-6000 or email

The 2013 summer sessions of Rogers Scholars will be held June 23-28 and July 7-12 on the campus of Lindsey Wilson College in Columbia.

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