Madison Powers is a woman with a plan. She knows what she wants, “I want to be a school teacher; I want to directly impact children.” And she knows what it takes to get there, “I majored in elementary education at Greensboro College with a minor in child and family studies.”

What Madison didn’t know in high school was how she could afford her chosen path. “Growing up I always wanted to go to college, but I didn’t know where. I didn’t think I could go to private school, because it’s expensive.” A self-proclaimed “country girl,” Madison liked the idea of smaller classes and the opportunity for individual instruction, but thought it was out of reach.

As she neared her 2016 date, one of her teachers at Eastern Guilford suggested she look at Greensboro College. “I found out that Greensboro College takes Say Yes, so I was super excited that I was going to able to live out some of my dreams.”

Greensboro College is one of 100 private colleges and universities that comprise the Say Yes Higher Education Compact typically offering full tuition scholarships for qualifying students whose annual family income is at or below $75,000.

Madison graduated in 2020 with loans totaling less than most students accumulate in just one year of school. She hopes to return to Guilford County Schools to share what she’s learned. “I want to be a part of Guilford County. Because Say Yes was able to give that to me, I want to be able to give back. I just want to make a difference.”

Ask what advice she will share with her students, Madison doesn’t hesitate. “Write your goals down, so you see them every day. If you want to do something, do it.”