Graduate from small Louisiana town receives national award of $25,000 for college

BENTONVILLE, Ark., June 2, 2005 – More than 6,700 top-notch high school seniors and graduates will receive scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $25,000 thanks to the Sam M. Walton Community Scholarship program, funded by the Wal-Mart & SAM’S CLUB Foundation. Students from all 50 U.S. states and Puerto Rico find out this week if they are the lucky winners for their hometown and local store.

This year, Wal-Mart will provide a record total of $6.9 million in scholarships through the program. The name of each local and state scholarship winner can be found under their state and hometown at under ‘Community Scholarships’.

From the small town of Napoleonville, La., (population of 800), high school graduate Julie Thibodaux has been named the National Winner of the Walton Community Scholarship and will receive the top award of $25,000 for college this fall. Her application was selected to receive the national award among all state and local winners in the program, which received 70,000 applications this year.

Up to two local winners are selected through every Wal-Mart store, SAM’S CLUB and Neighborhood Market across the U.S. and Puerto Rico to receive $1,000 each. State winners of the scholarship receive $5,000 for college.

“We hope that by helping so many young people reach their dream of a higher education, we can help improve the standard of living for families, local communities and our national community,” said Betsy Reithemeyer, vice president of Corporate Affairs over the Wal-Mart & SAM’S CLUB Foundation at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

The Sam M. Walton Community Scholarship program, now in its 25th year, is designed to provide financial assistance to graduating seniors for their high academic achievement and their participation in school extracurricular work and community service activities.

In order to qualify, a student must be in their senior year of high school, a U.S. citizen and have a minimum 2.5 grade point average. An independent panel of judges from Scholarship Program Administrators (SPA) select the recipients on the basis of financial need, academic record, ACT/SAT test scores, and school and community involvement.

Since its Community Scholarship program began, Wal-Mart has awarded more than $50 million in scholarship assistance. Wal-Mart, however, has provided more than $100 million in scholarship assistance over the last 25 years through many programs aimed at helping communities, organizations and young people reach their dreams of a higher education.
Sam Walton Community Scholarship Grants Awarded by State
Editor’s Note: Please go to for a complete listing of scholarship winners in your local community.


Number of Award Recipients per State

State winner and Hometown (store location)

Dollars Awarded for 2005 per state


184 winners

Megan Grant - Opp, AL (Andalusia)



19 winners

Venessa Williams - Kasilof, AK (Anchorage)



107 winners

Ashley Winter - Safford, AZ (Thatcher)



172 winners

Elliott Trenton - Pryatt, AR (Flippin)



347 winners

Nancy Campos - Stockton, CA (Stockton)



133 winners

Sunshine Reid - Villa Grove, CO (Salida)



69 winners

Nicole Smith - Manchester, CT (Manchester)



14 winners

Tyrel Jackson - Dover, DE (Dover)


District of Columbia

2 winners

Molly McArdle - Washington, DC (Alexandria)



357 winners

Dana Overbaugh - Gainesville, FL (Gainesville)



219 winners

ThanhHang Tran - Jonesboro, GA (Morrow/Atlanta)



18 winners

William Wilkerson - Pukalani, HI (Kahului – Maui)



42 winners

Krista Rigby - Rexburg, ID (Rexburg)



284 winners

Kelli Gibson - Manteno, IL (Bourbonnais)



191 winners

Mary Stevens - Jasonville, IN (Linton)



115 winners

Margareta Deboer - Boyden, IA (Sioux Center)



112 winners

Lisa Handke - Lancaster, KS (Atchison)



157 winners

Ashley Roberts - Eminence, KY (LaGrange)



167 winners

Julie Thibodaux* - Lapoleonville, LA (Thibodaux)



49 winners

Samantha Coe - Augusta, ME (Augusta)



92 winners

Tiffany Fleet - Baltimore, MD (Catonsville)



96 winners

Abby Allsopp - Amesbury, MA (Seabrook)



189 winners

Philip Morgan - Detroit, MI (Taylor)



112 winners

Amy Theis - Laporte, MN (Bemidji)



127 winners

Anna Hughes - Fulton, MS (Fulton)



248 winners

Tony Melton - Marionville, MO (Republic)



29 winners

Kathe Schmaing - Roundup, MT (Billings)



56 winners

Colt Kraus - Taylor, NE (Kearney)



41 winners

Micheal Kominsky - Las Vegas, NV (Las Vegas)


New Hampshire

48 winners

Elizabeth Hall - Newport, NH (Claremont)


New Jersey

85 winners

Eric Kokuma - Montclair, NJ (Union)


New Mexico

52 winners

Dax Contreras - Dax, NM (Las Cruces)


New York

189 winners

Michael Peragine - Lindenhurst, NY (Messapequa)


North Carolina

223 winners

Megan Leagon - Greensboro, NC (Greensboro)


North Dakota

18 winners

Stephanie, Simonson - Fargo, ND (Fargo)



251 winners

Rachel Pickering - Kenton, OH (Bellefontaine)



190 winners

Jessi Pitman - Waukomis, OK (Kingfisher)



55 winners

Emily Powell - Lebanon, OR (Lebanon)



236 winners

Wade Brown - North Versailles, PA (North Versailles)


Rhode Island

18 winners

Amanda Sawyer - North Smithfield, PA (Woonsocket)


South Carolina

127 winners

Kinston Vereen - Longs, SC (Myrtle Beach)


South Dakota

19 winners

Cody Lundie - Hill City, SD (Rapid City)



211 winners

Paul Scott - Savannah, TN (Savannah)



702 winners

Stephanie Bension - Houston, TX (Houston)



71 winners

Macgregor Whiting - Mapleton, UT (Springville)



9 winners

Ali Serrani - West Rutland, VT (Rutland)



166 winners

Tameka Jones - Richmond, VA (Richmond)



79 winners

Taylor Powers - Kent, WA (Auburn)


West Virginia

61 winners

Kathryn Schubert - Montrose, WV (Elkins)



166 winners

Heather Scriver - Kansasville, WI (Somers)



21 winners

Elena Del Real - Lander, WY (Riverton)


Puerto Rico

6 winners

Christina Alvelor - North Colegio De La Vega, PR (Manati)


More information about Wal-Mart’s charitable giving per state and other initiatives can be found at More information about the Wal-Mart and SAM’S CLUB Foundation is available at

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and SAM’S CLUB locations in the United States. Internationally, the company operates in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The company’s securities are listed on the New York and Pacific stock exchanges under the symbol WMT. Online merchandise sales are available at

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