REACH Georgia

We're happy to announce the 2021 REACH Scholars for Barrow County School System! REACH (Realizing Educational Achievement Can Happen) Georgia is a State of Georgia’s mentorship and college scholarship program.

Scholars are paired with a mentor and an academic coach through high school. They must maintain good behavior, grades and attendance, and graduate from high school. Scholars who successfully complete the program are awarded a $10,000 scholarship that can be used at any HOPE eligible college in Georgia. Many colleges are matching or double-matching these funds. The scholarship is awarded in addition to any other grant or scholarship the student receives.

The Barrow County School System REACH Scholars for 2020-2021 are:

Barrow Arts & Sciences Academy

The Barrow Arts and Sciences Academy is proud to announce its very first 8th grade REACH Scholar, Miss Journey Render. With a dream of studying dance at UGA and perhaps becoming a choreographer, she is already making a name for herself at BASA. Described as a glass half-full student who loves to dance, she is doing all she can to better herself in the art of dance, even as a distance learner. Journey is a tenacious student and a very hard worker! She has the grit to work through difficult assignments and topics, and is mature enough to ask great questions and advocate for herself! What an awesome young scholar to teach!

Bear Creek Middle School

Ricardo Martinez-Nava is the Bear Creek Middle School REACH scholar for 2020-2021. He is an 8th grader and has excelled during his time at BCMS. Ricardo is a brilliant and driven young man who truly embodies the work ethic and drive of someone who will meet and exceed his goals in life. He is a polite and courteous gentleman and BCMS is proud he is a Grizzly. The ultimate goal for Ricardo is to become an architect and he hopes to attend the University of Georgia. In his spare time, he enjoys basketball.

Haymon-Morris Middle School

Joniell Rodriguez Perez is a wonderful Wildcat who is truly a remarkable student. His past and present teachers describe him as honest, polite, persistent, hardworking, and diligent. He goes out of his way to help others and is empathetic. Joniell has a positive attitude along with a bright smile and a great sense of humor that will cheer up anyone’s day! Joniell is kind and respectful to everyone. He has a clear drive to learn and perseveres through obstacles. He takes pride in his work, is always willing to ask for help, and goes the extra mile to do his best. Overall, Joniell is an outstanding student and a joy to teach!

Russell Middle School

Niki Xiong is one of four children and will be the first in her family to attend college. She has aspirations of attending the University of Georgia and then medical school as she would like to pursue a career as a pediatrician or a NICU doctor. NIki says her greatest strength is her responsible nature -- if something needs to be done, she steps up to the challenge. You can see that trait echoed in her teacher’s comments, “Niki embodies the word Dependable. Her best qualities include motivation, great work ethic, and kindness. Niki can always be counted on to demonstrate respect and give her best in class each day.”

Westside Middle School

You will be hard pressed to find a more well-rounded student than Kentrollis Swan (T.J.). He has all the attributes that we seek in ourselves and society. You could use many adjectives, smart, kind, funny, and more to describe him, but the one that stands out the most is selfless. When asked how he defined success, he said it is not about being financially successful. Rather, it is about being surrounded by the people you care about and showing them that you care. With this definition of success, T.J. has a bright future ahead as he plans to study marketing management at the University of Georgia.

For more information about REACH Georgia, to become a BCSS mentor to a REACH Scholar, or to make a donation in support of one of the scholarships, contact Sherri Perry, REACH Program Coordinator at

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