Fifteen Saint Joseph’s College students, who are recipients of the George Mitchell Institute Scholarships, enjoyed the extraordinary opportunity to welcome Senator George Mitchell to campus today and introduce him to their academic work in their respective programs. The Saint Joseph’s College students’ hometowns range from Saco to Caribou and Fryeburg to Isleboro. Each year, students from Maine’s 133 public high schools receive a scholarship of about $9,000, paid out in four equal installments; these fifteen students have been recipients of this prestigious honor over the past 4 years. The scholarships stem from the Institute’s mission to “increase the likelihood that young people from every community in Maine will aspire to, pursue, and achieve a college education.”
In his remarks to Saint Joseph’s students, Mitchell said, “While you face challenges, you each face opportunity, too. Each of you needs to take advantage of opportunities presented to you. Aim high. The only failure is the failure to try. Always remember that, while you may want to succeed and achieve fame, wealth, or material possessions, the more you acquire, the more you find that there’s more to life than possessions. The real fulfillment is to serve a cause larger than yourself, to serve others. Give back to your community.” After sharing a breakfast with students and staff, Senator Mitchell toured the College’s Alfond Center Sports Complex, the Mercy Hall nursing SIM laboratory, the Alfond Hall Education Laboratory, and the College’s Stone Barn at Sebago Lake.
Of the Mitchell Scholarship Program that he founded in 1995, Mitchell has said that, “I came to believe that I, who had received so many helping hands, had a duty to use whatever ability I possess to see that no child in Maine who wants to go to college is without a helping hand.” From 1995 to 2016, the Institute has awarded 2,589 Mitchell Scholarships — totaling more than $13 million — to deserving students from every community in Maine.
Once Scholars are selected, the Mitchell Institute helps them navigate college and the world beyond through personal and professional supports. Beyond offering the financial support of the scholarship, the Mitchell Institute is committed to offering a wide array of personal, academic and professional support programs, as well as a network of more than 2,500 Mitchell Scholars, Alumni, and partners.