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WNCC Student Named Nebraska's 2016 New Century Scholar

April 22, 2016
Western Nebraska Community College student Rose Nelson of Potter, Neb. is Nebraska's 2016 Coca-Cola New Century Scholar after posting the state's top score among nominees to the All-USA Community College Academic Team. This is the second year in a row that a student from WNCC has garnered top honors for Nebraska. Ethan Nelson of Dalton, Neb. won the award last year.
Nelson is one of only 52 New Century Scholars from across the United States and American Samoa to earn the award. More than 1,700 students from over 1,000 community colleges were nominated for the honor. Rose received a $2,000 scholarship at the American Association of Community College (AACC) annual convention in Chicago, Ill.
"Being recognized with all of the other award recipients in Chicago was such a humbling experience," says Nelson. "Every single person there had an amazing story and has overcome so much; it was such an honor to be among them. It was just amazing!"
In addition to being named a New Century Scholar, Nelson received the 2015 Hixon-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts Nebraska Young Artist of the Year Award and earned a spot on the 2016 Phi Theta Kappa All-Nebraska Academic Team.
Rose grew up on a farm near Potter where she was home educated. At the age of 15, Nelson enrolled at the WNCC Sidney Campus where she began taking dual-credit courses(high school courses that earn college credit). 
Nelson will graduate this May with an Associate of Arts in General Studies. She plans to pursue a Bachelor's degree in both Piano Performance and Biochemistry.
The New Century Scholar program is sponsored by the Coca-Cola Foundation and the
Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, with additional support provided by the AACC and Phi Theta Kappa. Nominations were evaluated on academic achievement, leadership, service, and a response to a significant endeavor.