James A. “Jim” Perry, and his wife Rebecca, appreciates the importance of a good education. Jim is a graduate of Lenoir Community College, North Carolina State University, and Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina. Rebecca Perry graduated from North Carolina State University and The Johns Hopkins University.
Perry, a first generation college graduate, said when he graduated from South Lenoir High School, he wasn’t prepared to leave his hometown to go to college. “I didn’t have the discipline required to be successful with that much freedom. I was not a great student. I was more focused on the social aspect of college. I needed to be close to home in order to benefit from the support and guidance of my mother. Plus, we didn’t have financial resources, so LCC was a great lower cost option.”
As a LCC liberal arts graduate, Perry headed to North Carolina State University where he ultimately earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication. In 2009, he decided to go back to college, graduating with a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School. He is the vice president of operations for Affordable Care Inc.
In hopes of helping others, the Perrys have endowed the James and Rebecca Perry Foundation Scholarship. The scholarship is to be awarded to a deserving student with preference given to a South Lenoir High School graduate or an employee or a relative of an employee of Affordable Care/Affordable Dentures.
“No one in my family had attended college. I have a loving Mother who was willing to help me any way she could, we just did not know anything about the process. I was a Pell grant recipient. Had it not been for my financial aid, and this college (LCC), I don’t know where I would have ended up. I know I would have not been able to obtain an education without financial assistance. Rebecca and I believe this is a familiar story in this area.”
“Hopefully (this scholarship) will have a positive impact on someone. We just want to help deserving people, and we are fortunate to be able to do so.” Rebecca Perry said. “Young people can be intimidated by the multitude of changes and choices they face. Maybe this keeps them from facing one more burden.”
The Perry family wishes to encourage others to begin making good choices today. “One bad decision is not the sum total of your existence,” he added. “I have made plenty of bad choices. You can’t focus on yesterday’s bad decision; it never changes. Focus on tomorrow’s choices. It’s never too late to make a good decision, and start down a better path. Good things come from hard work, a little luck, and God’s grace.”