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Wood named scholarship semifinalist

Thorsby High School senior Lindsey Wood has been named as a semifinalist of the Coca-Cola Scholars Program Class of 2021.

She was selected as one of 1,609 high school seniors throughout the nation. The semifinalists were narrowed down from a pool of 99,403 applicants.

According to Wood, she was nervous about making the cut.

The final cut will involve 150 finalists that will each receive $20,000 in scholarship money to help pay for college.

“It’s still a big cut, but definitely not as big as the last one,” Wood chuckled.

The semifinalists will be required to submit answers to essay questions, as well as, a letter of recommendation and their educational transcripts.

Some of the essays entail explaining how the applicant was able to affect their community with their service and how they grew through the quarantine period.

Wood has applied for various community service and academic scholarships in recent years and has gotten familiar with the in-depth process that is usually required.

“The words seem to come more naturally the more you write,” Wood said. “The activities I’ve done here at school and working with Mrs. (Christina) Cochran has really helped my interview skills.”

The final step of the process would usually include going to Atlanta for an interview, but Wood was not sure if the in-person aspect of it would change due to the pandemic.

If Wood was to win the scholarship, she would be a second-generation recipient of the honor, after her father Kris Wood who was a Coca-Cola scholar when he was a high school senior.

“I always knew I wanted to apply for this one, because it was something that he did,” Wood said.

According to Wood, even if she does not get chosen as a finalist, she realizes how massive of an accomplishment it is just to make the cut from such a small town.

Even during the pandemic, Wood has continued to find ways to help her community, including continuing her charitable organization Bows That Bless.

“You can tell the ones who are dedicated and want to serve, because they are just finding new ways,” Wood said.

Although she has been saddened to see senior traditions and some of the social aspects of high school disappear because of COVID-19, she has also had time to truly reflect as she prepares for her life’s next step and going off to college.

“We’ve got to take advantage of the opportunities that we still have,” Wood said.