Growing up in the Dix Gap community of 1920s Cullowhee, Katherine Brown Wells had a front-porch view of WCU as it evolved from start-up high school to junior college to full-fledged four-year institution.
At a long-legged 5 feet 8 inches, Velma “Leone” Hyde Hughes Ray ’41 (left)
had a pretty decent stride. Good thing – she covered a lot of ground in her 77 years: loyal sister, favorite aunt, farm wife, school teacher, basketball player.
Home alone, while her parents worked, an 8-year-old Alecia Page ’13 tried to open her only source of food for that evening, but to no avail. She didn’t know how to use the can opener. She went to bed, the can of corn intact, her stomach empty and her eyes full of tears. She prayed for a different life. It took a while, but she got it.
There is a rhythm to the madness that once defined Kevin Rumley’s life. (Figures. The dude’s a drummer.) But now, there’s only rhythm. No madness. Just peace, love and joy – mostly. And purpose – definitely purpose.
Hidden among the pages of his childhood journal, Western Carolina University senior Briar Boggs found a sign, THE sign: a wistful note from his 10-year-old self, longing for a dream he did not think possible. The discovery made him cry.
She was first influenced as a child by television pictures of 15th-century temples in China’s Forbidden City and elaborate, ornate churches in Europe, beautifully designed structures, all of which left an indelible mark on a little Chinese girl growing up in Vietnam.
It was officially a fundraiser, complete with fancy dresses, smart suits, great food and a silent auction. But to many in attendance, the 2018 University Participant Program Benefit Gala was like a family reunion, with picture taking, memory sharing, handshakes and hugs.
Erin West knows the value of a scholarship can go well beyond its dollar sign. A senior in the College of Business, West has received slightly more than $17,000 in WCU scholarships since her sophomore year.