Crossing the finish line

KENNESAW, Ga. | Apr 20, 2023

Marine Corps Coordinating Council of Georgia establishes scholarship to help KSU students reach graduation

David McKoy '05
Military and Veteran Services (MVS) at Kennesaw State University provides service members, veterans, and dependents with academic and financial support to help them succeed.

A recent gift of $100,000 from the Marine Corps Coordinating Council of Georgia (MCCCGA) established The Colonel George Bailey, USMC Endowed Scholarship Fund. These scholarships will provide financial support to active duty or reserve Marine, Fleet Marine Force Navy Corpsmen, or honorably discharged Marine veterans participating in KSU’s MVS program.

Immediate Past President of the KSU Alumni Association, David McKoy, is a member of MCCCGA and played an instrumental role in bringing this scholarship opportunity to Kennesaw State.

McKoy graduated with his master’s in quality assurance from Southern Polytechnic State University in 2005 after 22 years of active service in the Marine Corps. McKoy said giving back to the University is essential because it has a noticeable impact.

“Many of our students aren’t just students—they are going to school full time, working full time, serving their country, and having families.”

An active community member, McKoy frequently engages with college and university students across Georgia. “One day, I was talking to a Marine reservist who told me he was having to delay his graduation a semester because his funding from the GI Bill had run out and he couldn’t afford the cost of tuition,” said McKoy.

Familiar with Kennesaw State’s Gap Scholarship, McKoy presented the idea to establish a similar scholarship to help service men and women who have exhausted all other financial aid options take the final steps to earn their degrees.

“Our mission is simple,” explained Brigadier General Denis Shortal, the council’s chairman. “We assist Marines, Marines’ families, and wounded warriors. When we found out there were Marines and Navy Corpsmen at KSU being forced to drop out of school because their GI Bill funds ran out, we saw a need that we knew we wanted to support.”

“We owe our veterans and active duty forces a debt of gratitude for their service. Oftentimes, their GI Bill education benefits do not cover the full cost of college,” explained Stacey Dixon, Director of KSU’s MVS. “We are grateful to the Marine Corps Coordinating Council of Georgia for establishing The Colonel George Bailey, USMC Endowed Scholarship Fund to ease that financial burden and help our military and veteran students cross the finish line to graduation.”

Kyle Posey, a construction management major, will be among the first students to cross the finish line thanks to the assistance provided by the Colonel George Bailey, USMC Endowed Scholarship.

“I am grateful for the Colonel George Bailey Scholarship in assisting me to achieve my mission of attaining higher education,” Posey remarked. “The Marine Corps taught me to invest in self-development and to learn something new every day. I am thankful for organizations that help make self-development financially easier for veterans. I am honored to be among the first to receive this scholarship.”

- By Elyssa Reed
Photos by
Judith Pishnery and Matt Yung

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