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Society scholarships help fulfill dreams

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Quinnell Pitt. Photo courtesy of Quinnell Pitt

The Society scholarship program makes the seemingly impossible possible for students affected by MS.

by Marcella Durand

In his application letter to the National MS Society scholarship program, Quinnell Pitt, 28, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at age 18 during his sophomore year of college, wrote, “I would really like a chance to help people understand that nothing is impossible.”

Pitt got that chance when he was approved for a Society scholarship to go back to school last spring. After 10 years of living with the disease, he realized he had a choice: “I could either lie down and take it, or I could stand up and try to fight against it,” he says. With that clarity, he decided to return to college. “Finally, I got an understanding of who I am.”

Today, Pitt is a young man working toward his degree in human services at the County College of Morris in New Jersey. He also works at Wal-Mart and volunteers for People Helping People In Need (PHPIN), an organization that helps people with a chemical dependency, mental illness or physical disability find work.

For Pitt and many other students who have MS, or whose parents have MS, a Society scholarship can help place seemingly impossible dreams within reach. “The world and I now both know that a person with disabilities can achieve their goals,” he says.

The Society’s scholarship program has continually expanded since its inception in 2003. That year, the Society awarded 36 scholarships totaling $68,000; in 2016 over $1 million in scholarships were awarded to 817 students.

Learn how to apply by visiting the Scholarship Program, or call 1-800-344-4867.

Tags: Fall 2016