Special to the
Opelika Observer

The Southern Union Foundation invites you to join them under the big top for the 2018 Foundation Gala.
Once again, the SU Foundation is raising funds to enhance the SU Foundation Scholarship Fund and award Dual Enrollment Scholarships to area students. The event will be held Sept. 29 at 7 p.m. on the Center Lawn of Southern Union’s Wadley Campus. It provides eligible high school students an opportunity to enroll in college courses concurrently with high school classes, and earn high school and college credit simultaneously. This enables students to experience more advanced curriculum offerings and offers a seamless transition from high school to college.
Dual enrollment also lowers the cost of a postsecondary education and sharpens general preparedness for college.
“Opportunities in dual enrollment have grown tremendously but financial roadblocks keep students from enrolling.
Dual enrolled students do not qualify for Pell Grant scholarships and there are very few scholarships available to assist them,” commented Mary Kirby, who is helping to coordinate the gala. “We want to offer assistance where we can. Not only does Dual Enrollment prepare students for college academically, but it offers enrichment, giving them a chance to get on a college campus and get a taste of college life; to reinforce that they can go to college andabe successful.”
Organizers have planned a night of fun featuring the Southern Union Fine Arts Department, dinner and entertainment by the Imperial OPA Circus. Individual tickets are now on sale for the Gala at a cost of $75 for adults and $50 for children under 12.
The Foundation would like to thank the following businesses and individuals who have made generous donations toward dual enrollment scholarships through sponsorship of the Gala so far: Top-tier Big Top Sponsors: WM Grocery, Tanner Health System, First Bank, Small Town Bank, First Bank of Alabama, FirstState Bank, Dance Center on Main, The Peaceful Porch, City of Opelika, and Town of Wadley; Ringmaster Sponsors are Senator and Mrs. Gerald Dial, Alabama Power Foundation, M Salon, Ken Seiffert of State Farm Insurance, Dale and Carol Knight, ischoolsports networks, BBVA Compass, Opelika Chamber of Commerce, Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce, Randolph County Chamber of Commerce, PH&J Architects, and Cheaha Music Company. The Grandstand sponsors are Rep. Bob Fincher, Randolph County Circuit Clerk Chris May, Robin Brown, and Rance and Marty Kirby.
Sponsorship opportunities are also still available. For more information or to purchase tickets contact the SU Foundation office at 256-395-2211, ext. 5145.