Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Charlotte's investment in Isaiah

Four years ago, I wrote about Isaiah Scott's quest to go to Morehouse College.  After piling up honors and accomplishments at West Charlotte High, he'd been accepted to the historically black, all-male private school in Atlanta.  But as one of seven children of a divorced dad, he needed money to close the gap between the scholarships he'd won and the $29,000-a-year cost.

Support poured in for the personable, hard-working teen.  Churches, businesses and individuals, including alums of West Charlotte and Morehouse, rallied with financial, personal and spiritual support.  They stuck with him through four years of college, where he continued his record of leadership and success.

Yesterday I visited the newly-minted Morehouse graduate and some of his family (more about that coming in print soon).  Scott couldn't say enough good things about the support he got from the West Charlotte faculty and the community members who helped him through college.

L-R: Esther, Isaiah, Leon (father) and John Scott.
 "It was an overwhelming downpour of support,"  he said.  "It's just a lot of love and a lot of prayer."

While he was at Morehouse, he helped recruit students for Teach For America, a program that sends young teachers into West Charlotte and other high-poverty CMS schools.  He'll soon report to work at American Express in New York City, but he had a few weeks between his May 15 graduation and his start date.

So he tapped his network of Charlotte contacts to help him get an internship with Mayor Anthony Foxx. "There's kind of a 'no sitting around the house' mentality here," he said of his high-achieving family.  Scott didn't get to join Foxx on his trip to the White House earlier this week, but he did help prepare Foxx's notes for his meeting with the president.

Seeing Scott at 22, sharp and confident in his business suit, I couldn't help thinking back to the last conversation we'd had, when he was an 18-year-old humbled by all the support.  "I don't want to come back to Charlotte and it's like, 'Aw, man, I invested in a knucklehead,' " he said then.

No danger of that.


mjohnston said...

Yes, Isaiah is an outstanding young man - as are his siblings! They are all bright, ambitious, and understand how important education is to attain their goals. All (but one or two) of the Scott siblings were very involved in our program (Communities In Schools) at West Charlotte, and we are so proud of each one. And Isaiah's older brother, Mordecai, a 2010 graduate of Davidson College, recently went to work for Communities In Schools' national office, helping to build its national CIS alumni network! Looking forward to reading your next article about the Scott family!

Anonymous said...

I'm saving your upcoming article for my 18-year-old son of south Charlotte privilege who is heading off to college this fall. I hope and pray he meets, becomes friends with and is inspired by young men like Isaiah. Great biblical name, by the way.

Yea, Ann.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely fantastic!!!! Congratulations young man!!! Much luck to you and your proud family!!! Go forth into the world and make a difference!!! Build on this success!!!


Anonymous said...

Well done, Isaiah and family!!

WC '75

Anonymous said...

Great story -