Corsicana Daily Sun
December 15, 2016
Navarro College announced Monday, Dec. 12 that Brittany Bailey was named the 2016 Ollie Bius Scholarship award. This scholarship was established six years ago by Ray and Sandee McCann, Corsicana residents, in honor of Sandee’s mother Ollie Bius.
Brittany is a 2015 graduate of Waxahachie High School and plans to graduate in May 2018 with her Associate Degree in Nursing. She would then like to continue on to The University of Texas at Arlington to pursue her Master’s Degree and become a Developmental Disability Nurse.
“I want to help others as I feel it is very important to care for others. Brittany said, “I grew up with a disabled brother and I feel that there is room for improvement in group care.”
While at Waxahachie High School she earned her pharmacy tech certificate and now works 30 hours per week to pay living expenses, while also going to school full-time.
“This scholarship is giving me the opportunity to continue the pursuit of my dream and I am very grateful,” she said very emotionally.
She also said without this scholarship, she likely would not have continued with her education as the pressures of adult life and school were burdensome. This scholarship will provide tuition, fees and books to see her through her Associate Degree.
The Ollie Bius Scholarship Fund was established to continue her legacy. Ollie Bius was born in 1916 in the Piney Woods of East Texas. Daily life was a struggle for the impoverished family. Ollie was an excellent student and encouraged by a principal to continue her education after high school. She picked cotton to help supplement the family’s needs and over a two-year period saved only $25 for herself, money that would be life changing.
A relative who lived in Fort Worth heard about her ability and arranged for her to meet with a doctor and his wife who often supported students for the nursing program. At the meeting the doctor informed her that her school costs were paid. She promised to pay him back, however he told her that in her future profession if she could help someone else that would be pay-back. She took that to heart and paid it forward to numerous students over her forty-six year nursing career and then into her retirement.
She passed away at the age of eighty-eight, but informed her daughters on her death bed that she was funding the cost of college for a young woman who had a year to finish and they needed to finish paying those costs. At the visitation and funeral the family learned about several people who Ollie had funded college costs for; some the family knew and others they did not.
Ollie Bius fulfilled the doctor’s request to pay it forward, and her family continues the legacy. Navarro College is in its 70th year and its mission is to provide educational opportunities that empower students to achieve their personal, academic, and career goals and promote life-long learning for all communities served. The vision for the college is to be a nationally recognized higher education institution committed to providing innovative pathways and student-centered learning opportunities that result in students capable of succeeding in a local and global community.
SOURCE: Corsicana Daily Sun