An endowed scholarship established in honor of a longtime North Alabama pastor will benefit students from Brewer High School in perpetuity. The Eldridge Criscoe Endowed Scholarship will be available to Wallace State Community College students who graduate from or attended Brewer High School.
The scholarship was funded by a donation from Johnny Albright, who attended one of the eight churches Criscoe has pastored over his 63 years in the ministry. A native of Union Grove in Marshall County, Criscoe has served as pastor of churches in Marshall, Jackson and Morgan counties. One of those churches was Ryan Baptist Church, where Albright was a member.
“He’s helped a lot of people and that’s why I wanted to do this,” Albright said of Criscoe. “He’s been a good influence on a lot of people and is a pillar of the community. He needs to be remembered for all he’s done for the community.”
Semi-retired from preaching, Criscoe serves as a substitute preacher for several small churches in the area. Albright makes the effort to attend services when Criscoe is preaching.
Criscoe said he was shocked when Albright asked if he could establish a scholarship in his name. “I couldn’t say no,” he said. “I told him I would be honored if he did.
“It’s going to give some young people an opportunity they wouldn’t have,” he added. “I know through my own experience working and going to school, that any help is appreciated.” Criscoe said he was among one of the first classes at the University of Alabama in Huntsville when it opened. He attended off and on for 12 years before earning degrees in history and English.
The first scholarship for full tuition and fees could be awarded as early as Spring 2018, said Suzanne Harbin, Director of Advancement for Wallace State.
“We very much appreciate the trust of Mr. Albright to establish a scholarship at Wallace State in honor of you,” said Dr. Karolewics. “We certainly value that trust and will be great stewards of that investment in the lives of the students that we serve.”