Wyatt Scholarship Offers Help To Non-Traditional Student

John Wyatt described his son as tall, good-looking and a hard worker.

“He liked people. He had a good personality,” John said of Mark, who died in an auto accident in 1997 at the age of 28. “He just sometimes didn’t use all his assets to his full advantage.”

To help others not fall into the same traps, John and his late wife, Alma, established the Mark Daniel Wyatt Memorial Scholarship. The $1,500 annual scholarship first was awarded in 2014. It’s targeted for a graduate of Tabb High School, Mark’s alma mater. The recipient does not have to be on track for a four-year degree, can be taking classes toward an industry certificate, and can be a full-time or part-time student.
Mark attended VPCC, known then as Thomas Nelson Community College, but never earned a degree or certificate.

John was a tradesman himself, so he knows the value of those programs, which is why the scholarship winner doesn’t have to take the traditional academic route.

“I was a tool-and-die maker and that's what really saved me,” he said. “I listened to my father and served a four-year apprenticeship.”

Mark, who was divorced and had a daughter at the time of his death, worked at Pizza Hut and entered a chef program at The Trellis Bar and Grill.

“He was a great guy, but he just couldn’t find a bearing out here in the employment world,” John said.

John likes the idea of helping someone with a skill or trade. Or someone who needs just a course or two to get a promotion at work or to move into a more lucrative position.

“I just wanted to help somebody start out,” he said.

For more information in scholarship opportunities at the College, visit www.vpcc.edu.