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Announcing Our Spring 2020 Beacon® Scholarship For Rural America Winner!

Written by
Tina Williamson
Published on
December 5, 2019 at 9:09:00 PM PST December 5, 2019 at 9:09:00 PM PSTth, December 5, 2019 at 9:09:00 PM PST

 Anthony Martino, from Penrose, N.C., is the recipient of the Spring 2020 Beacon® Scholarship for Rural America, a scholarship which was introduced by Carrot-Top Industries in 2018. We received applications from states across the country including Arizona, Arkansas, California, Idaho, Louisiana, North Carolina, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming. Martino is a shining example of community patriotism that continues to thrive in rural towns today.

The Beacon® Scholarship supports the American dream that every U.S. citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through diligence, perseverance, and initiative, even if there are limitations due to the cost of education. The Spring 2020 Beacon® Scholarship awarded one student $1,000. Graduating high school seniors, current college students, and adult learners with a GPA of 3.0 or higher who planned to enroll in an accredited college program applied. Applicants were required to reside in a rural area, meet low-income criteria, and provide an essay about how they have shown patriotism through their community involvement.

It was important to Carrot-Top Industries that the scholarship winner met all of the requirements mentioned above while also showing they had clear goals for their future education and community involvement. While applicants showed their patriotism in their community in different ways, they were all determined to make a difference through volunteering, showing appreciation for those who came before them, and ensuring their town has a better future through their service.

“We are excited to help rural, low-income students meet their educational goals so they can make a positive contribution to America’s future. The Beacon® Scholarship celebrates the American dream of individuality, equal opportunity, hard work, and determination,” said Liz Morris, Carrot-Top Industries CEO and President. 

Meet Anthony Martino

Anthony Martino describes his hometown of Penrose, N.C., as a “small unincorporated community in Transylvania County, which sits between Brevard and Hendersonville, minutes from the foothills of DuPont Forest.” According to Martino, “Although Penrose is a small rural community with no large industry, we have beautiful scenic mountain views along winding country roads. Transylvania County is known as ‘Land of the Waterfalls,’ with over 250 waterfalls.” 

Martino is currently attending Brevard College, in Brevard, N.C., working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. “After graduation, I plan to pursue a career in law enforcement as a crime scene investigator,” said Martino. He is motivated by his determination to achieve the goals he has set for himself. “I try to inspire others by setting a good example, working hard, and having a positive attitude,” said Martino. “I enjoy learning new things and look forward to seeing what the future holds for me.” 

According to Martino’s essay titled “Everday Patriotism”, he shows his patriotism in his community in a variety of ways such as:

  • Volunteering regularly with the Heart of Brevard to promote the historic downtown district of Brevard, N.C., while assisting citizens and tourists during special events.
  • Helping SK8 Brevard build a new local community skate park to make the city a better place and build community pride.
  • Showing appreciation towards his community’s veterans by placing new flags or replacing worn flags on the graves of the fallen in remembrance of Memorial Day while also cleaning up the gravestones as needed.
  • Participating in his high school’s Marine Core Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (MJROTC) program focusing on leadership education, citizenship, and character building.
  • Serving as a MJROTC cadet, he assisted directing traffic at football games, participated in the local Memorial Day parade, and worked with MJROTC’s cyber patriot’s team, learning how to protect computers while representing his MJROTC program, high school, and the community at competitions.
  • Working part-time and paying his taxes while attending school, participating in the local, state, and federal elections as a registered voter, and knowing and abiding by his local, state, and federal laws. 


Here are excerpts from Martino’s essay on patriotism:

“True patriotism is so much more than annual celebrations and traditions. Patriotism can be shown every day just by simply involving yourself in your community.” 

“Patriotism is not always grand gestures or paying the ultimate sacrifice. Nor is it barbecues, fireworks, and parties. To me, it means so much more. I love my country and my community. I try to show my patriotism every day by helping my community to grow and develop, even when it something that others would consider small.” 

Martino appreciates how much the Beacon® Scholarship will help him with his education. “I truly appreciate being the recipient of this scholarship. It will be very beneficial towards my studies at Brevard College, helping me to achieve my life-long goal of being a law enforcement officer,” said Martino.

If you know of any deserving students who would qualify for our Beacon® Scholarship for Rural America, have them visit /beacon-scholarship to apply.

Upcoming application deadlines for the 2020-2021 Beacon® Scholarship for Rural America are: 

Fall 2020 Scholarships: June 30, 2020

Spring 2021 Scholarship: October 31, 2020