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Alpha Phi Alpha, Inc. awards 11 scholarships to Selma and Dallas County seniors

The Delta Pi Lambda Chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity held their 10th annual John D. Taylor Scholarship ceremony Thursday at First Baptist Church.

Eleven graduating seniors, mostly from Selma and Dallas County High Schools, received scholarships the local Alpha Phi Alpha chapter also known as the “Black Belt Alphas.”

Selma High had seven scholarship winners: Derrick Hatcher Jr., Aaneus Gary, ReNari Wells, Bryant Gordon, Michael Harris, Zarieana Simpson and Chantavia Coleman.

Joshua Gourdine (Dallas County High), Alexis Blevins (Southside High), Kaleb Long (Ramsey High) and Ariel Croswell (Highland Home High) were the scholarship recipients.

Delta Pi Lambda Chapter President Billy Young presided over the program and praised the seniors and their parents for overcoming COVID-19 pandemic.

“We had to make an adjustment, but we did not lose focus on making sure the seniors in Selma and Dallas County had scholarships,” Young said.

Delta Pi Lambda Chapter Founder Charles Johnson Sr. delivered the greetings and urged the seniors to follow their dreams.

“Whatever your dreams are, make sure you work hard to fulfill and achieve those dreams,” Johnson said.

Delta Pi Lambda Chapter scholarship chair Donovan McGuire of Legal Services, Inc. told the seniors that a strong education is a great building block for future success.

“Education is a great engine for personal development,” McGuire said. “Education is the most powerful weapon that can change the world.”

Delta Pi Lambda Chapter Vice President LeBarron Mack delivered the prayer and gave a brief history of Alpha Phi Alpha, Inc.

Young also announced during the ceremony that the Black Belt Alphas will be awarding additional scholarships later this summer. Young also said several seniors missed the deadline because of the coronavirus and raised money through several local organizations and other Delta Pi Lambda Chapter members.

“We want to make sure everyone has a chance to get a quality education,” Young said.