Three years ago, family and friends of the late Kevin Grant started a scholarship in his memory to help Pitt Community College students with disabilities – preferably enrolled in a computer-related field of study – pay for their educational expenditures.
A Pitt County native, Grant was born with osteogenesis imperfecta and scoliosis. He would end up passing away from complications caused by those conditions in July 2006, just shy of his 30th birthday.
Those closest to Grant recall that he never complained about his disabilities. They remember the courage and determination he demonstrated in the face of adversity, as well as his many accomplishments, including graduation as salutatorian of his Greenville Christian Academy class in 1994 and earning an associate degree in Information Systems Technology from PCC in 2000. Before his death, he worked at Computer Peripherals in Greenville.
“Computers were a passion of Kevin’s, and PCC was an important part of his life,” his sister, PCC Scholarships Coordinator Kim Simpkins, says. “It gave him the opportunity to attend college and obtain a degree, which gave him a tremendous amount of self-worth and pride.”
Simpkins says it is her family’s hope the Kevin M. Grant Memorial Scholarship “will honor Kevin’s legacy and encourage others to achieve their educational goals, despite any adversities they may face.”
Texas Nelson, a PCC Information Technology: Computer Programming and Development student, became the first recipient of the Kevin M. Grant Memorial Scholarship. The $500-award helped offset the cost of his tuition, fees and supplies during the 2021-22 academic year.
“Sometimes, on the path to academia, the road becomes perilous, and we are faced with choices that tend to diminish our spirits, and even one’s best laid plans veer off course,” Nelson said. “In many books, a hero sets out on a quest (and) he or she sometimes finds a companion, friend, knight or warrior that appears out of nowhere, when they are needed most. These are the words that come to mind when I think of the people who have helped me in my quest for academia.”
The PCC Foundation awarded a $500-Kevin M. Grant Memorial Scholarship to Entrepreneurship student James Morgan for the 2022-23 academic year.