Evelyn Hamilton (69C)
Evelyn Hamilton (69C) knows the power of education to better a young person's future. One of three African American students who integrated Berry in 1964, she says her college experience prepared her well for a career - and a lifetime - of helping others. Now, Evelyn paves the way for other students by providing a scholarship as a loyal member of the Martha Berry Society.
Encouraged to Grow
Evelyn's journey to becoming a college graduate began with the encouragement of her aunt in California. "She was a stickler for education. She had no children, so she took me and my sister under her wing. She always stressed the importance of college and how it could change our lives. Learning about what Miss Berry did reminded me of what my aunt talked about. You know, Miss Berry never had kids, but she loved children and wanted to make sure that they got an education to better their lives."
Today, Evelyn credits her Berry degree with positively impacting her life. After graduating in 1969, she began a career that would span 34 years with the Georgia, Floyd County Department of Family and Children Services. "It was because of the great education I got at Berry that I was able to get the job, and that enabled me to go on to build a future for myself and my family."
Committed to helping the next generation
Evelyn pays forward the help she received by sharing the power of education with a new generation through the Hamilton-Smith scholarship, which she helped to establish in 2012 with fellow classmate Beverly Smith (69C) and the Berry African American Alumni Chapter. Evelyn's spirit of generosity and her desire to invest in the lives of Berry students are hallmarks of our Martha Berry Society members.
"We got the chance to meet with our current scholarship recipient last month and heard how she's getting ready to travel abroad this summer. It's incredible to realize all the opportunities that will open up for her because of Berry. I can't wait to see where she goes from here. Knowing that my contribution helps make a difference in a young person's future is incredibly rewarding."
The Martha Berry Society is a special group of alumni and friends whose collective generosity ensures that Berry remains a place of opportunity for students from all walks of life.