Last night’s Lane County Beat the Odds dinner was one of the best evenings I’ve had in a while. Not only did we hear inspirational words from Dr. Gustavo Balderas, the superintendent of Eugene’s School District 4J, but we heard an amazingly focused message from this year’s awardee.
“In this life, we often are given so many opportunities for an education that we have the option to seize. I feel so lucky to be gifted with the abundance that I have.” Powerful stuff from Shanti Bartz, this year’s Lane County Beat the Odds Scholar.
I’ll tell you what: not many dry eyes during her speech. Students like Shanti and the other Beat the Odds scholars push themselves to the next level, overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds, to succeed in the classroom and in life. That’s why 90% of Beat the Odds Scholars are on track to graduate or have already graduated with their degrees!
Last night wasn’t just inspirational, it was hugely important for Lane County’s commitment to positive programs like Beat the Odds. We were able to raise nearly $50,000, building the movement to put every Oregon student on a path to a successful, productive life. Help us build on that movement and donate $25 today!
Shanti knows the importance that her public schools have played in her life. She plans on paying forward that gratitude as she pursues her college degree.