MEADOW BRIDGE, WV (WOAY) – A handful of students at Meadow Bridge Elementary School will be going to Space Camp next year.
Every year an alumnus of Meadow Bridge, Russell Dunford, visits the school and awards full-ride scholarships for Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama to kids that have shown excellence in the STEM fields.
According to Dunford, he does this as a way to get kids involved in STEM at an early age and pay things forward to his alma mater.
“It started off with my grandmother,” Dunford said.” She told me there comes a time in life where it’s better to give than to receive. And in 2015 I said I’m at that point in my life and I would like to sponsor a kid to space camp.”
Dunford started the scholarship back in 2015 and returns every year to award grants to fifth graders. He calls the scholarship Failure is Not an Option.
It starts out with an assembly, where the students learn about what they can do with STEM education.
This year is also a special one for the scholarships, as it’s the first time that a staff member at Meadow Bridge will be given the chance to go to Space Camp with the students. The staff member is Kami Walker, the Administrative Assistant at Meadow Bridge Elementary.
“I’m over the moon,” Walker said. “Actually, my background is in the Air Force and I have a lot of knowledge on that, and I want to bring that to the kids here.”
Four kids were selected for the scholarships, two primaries, and two secondaries, in case one of the primary kids can’t make it. The kids will leave for Space Camp in Huntsville Alabama next year.