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ATC recognizes students at Awards Night

April 21, 2018

GRANITEVILLE — Aiken Technical College recognized students for academic, leadership and service accomplishments Thursday during its annual Awards Night.

The George H. “Buck” Grant Award was presented to Zachary Dabbs. The honor is awarded annually to a graduating student who has at least a 3.0 grade point average, has contributed to the college through extracurricular activities and possess the potential to enhance the college’s image in the future.

Dabbs, of Beech Island, said receiving the award “means everything.”

“Winning this award means the world because it shows me that I can actually do what I set my mind to and proves that anyone who has a goal in mind can accomplish that as well,” he said.

Dabbs will attend USC Aiken in the fall and plans to become a doctor, either a neurologist or neonatologist.

Dabbs received the award from Lou Grant-Hartnett, the widow of Buck Grant, and Matthew Golson, who received the first Buck Grant Award 45 years ago in 1973.

“I’m blessed to have been a part of getting the award started in memory of my husband,” said Grant-Hartnett, who added she is now 92 and a half and proud of it.

Grant was an Aiken lawyer and state representative who was chairman of the Legislative Delegation when ATC, then the Aiken Technical Education Center, was founded.

Golson said winning the first Buck Grant Award benefited him throughout his career.

“I started out in plant maintenance, but at every company I’ve worked at, I’ve ended up in management,” he said. “It’s been a great honor and has meant a lot to me over the years.”

The Outstanding Student Service Award was presented to Victoria Shekastehband for her leadership and volunteer contributions to the college, the student body and the community.

Shekastehband said winning the award was a “total surprise.”

“I honestly wasn’t expecting it at all,” she said. “I love it. It’s a great honor, and I’m super excited.”

Shekastehband plans to combine the welding skills she learned at ATC and the business skills she will learn at USCA starting in the fall.

“I haven’t decided how I’m going to mingle them together, but I’m definitely going to do something in welding and something in business,” she said.

During the event, the ATC Foundation also announced its 2018-19 scholarship recipients with scholarships totaling more than $47,000.

The top scholarship, the $3,000 Ashley J. Little Endowment Scholarship, was awarded to Mercy Workman.

The scholarship is awarded each year to a full-time student who has at least a 3.5 grade point average on a 4.0 scale and has demonstrated a strong work ethic through work experience in the public or private sector and a commitment to volunteerism through community service activities.

Additional scholarship awards will be announced later this spring for 2018 high school graduates and other incoming new students.

Outstanding student awards went to Jewanda Blacks, associate in applied science; Buffy Duncan, associate in arts; Savannah Ray, associate in science; Lauren Friday, business and computer technology; Steven Walling, health sciences; and Noah Slate, technical education.

Student Leadership Awards went to Shauntel Williams-Taylor, Victoria Shekastehband, Jonathan Grantham, Noah Slate, Daniel Willoner, Daniela Sanchez, Lisa Washington, Mary Bennington, Jeanna Belz and Jonathan McGee.

Service Appreciation Awards went to Jonathan McGee, Brandon Able, Daniela Sanchez, Noah Slate, Victoria Shekastehband, Abby Williams, Lisa Washington and Marticia Wright.

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