As high school graduations occur throughout the region, it’s only natural to think about the next step for many of these students – college. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas also thinks about, and plans for, this next stage in the educational process and that is where BBBS’ scholarship program manager, John MacNary, plays a major role.
In 1986, a Central Texas family created an endowment to start a scholarship program that would benefit BBBS students and further their educational goals. John oversees this program by identifying students who are eligible for BBBS’ scholarships and getting them enrolled.
“I was a first-generation college student,” John said, “so I try to help others onto that path. Applying for college can be a complicated process. There are a lot of steps.”
To help students navigate these steps John works to make students aware of all the resources that are available to them. “I want to make college more accessible,” John added. “There are a lot of students who don’t even think about college because they need to work to help their families. I want students in our program to know that college is an option and that we are here to help.”
“Big Brothers Big Sisters is excited to invest in young people,” John said, “and our scholarship program strengthens our agency, and our Littles’ experiences with us, as a whole. Students are required to remain matched with their Big Brothers or Sisters for over a year to qualify for a scholarship through BBBS.”
In his down time John enjoys the downtown Austin scene and discussing politics. He also enjoys an unofficial role as a tour guide for friends when they travel to New York City. But his major focus is still BBBS. “I just love the opportunity to help kids,” John said.