Regions Bank Awards 30 Scholarships in honor of Black History Month in 2018 Regions Riding Forward® Scholarship Essay Contest

More than $125,000 in educational assistance awarded through this year’s contest

Winning essays can be found online at (Photo: Business Wire)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.--()--Regions Bank has announced the 2018 winners of the seventh-annual Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest. The contest celebrates Black History Month by allowing high school seniors and college students who reside or attend college within Regions’ geographic footprint to submit an essay about how an African-American has been an inspiration in the applicant’s life.

This year’s 30 contest winners, selected from more than 7,300 entries, will divide more than $125,000 in scholarship funds. Winning high school seniors each receive $5,000, and winning college students each receive $3,500. One scholarship in each category is awarded in each of the 15 states served by Regions branches.

Winners of the 2018 Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest are as follows (winner and essays can also be found at

High School Winners and University/College to be attended:


  Alexia Tyler (Paducah, Ky.) – University of Louisville

Anika Mittal (Blytheville, Ark.) – Harvard University

Bobby Keahey, Jr. (Birmingham, Ala.) – University of Alabama

Dante Allen (Lilburn, Ga.) – Georgia Institute of Technology

DeAndre Phillips (Niceville, Fla.) – University of Central Florida

Delilah Sayer (St. Louis, Mo.) – Southeast Missouri State University

Devin Franklin (Fort Worth, Texas) – University of Alabama

Jarad Portis (New Orleans, La.) – Dillard University

Jordyn Blakely (Carmel, Ind.) – Butler University

Justin Evans (Plainfield, Ill.) – Morehouse College

Kennedy Turner (Urbandale, Iowa) – University of Iowa

Michelle He (Knoxville, Tenn.) – Vanderbilt University

Raven Walters (Charleston, S.C.) – Spelman College

Sha’Qwanna Gandy (Quitman, Miss) – Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

Sydney Hanan (Fayetteville, N.C.) – University of North Carolina at Charlotte


College Winners and their College/University:


  Abbey Bethel (Baton Rouge, La.) – Southeastern Louisiana University

Alexis McCowan (Rocky Mount, N.C.) – Howard University

Aletea Daniels (Pensacola, Fla.) – Florida A&M University

Aquavia Jones (Fort Smith, Ark.) – University of Arkansas-Fort Smith

Andrew Shelton (Hoover, Ala.) – University of Montevallo

Bryn Evans (Decatur, Ga.) – Columbia University in the City of New York

Colin Vaughan (Camby, Ind.) – Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis

Dell Zimmerman (Ooltewah, Tenn.) – University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

DeMerrius Plair (O’Fallon, Mo.) – Jackson State University

Deja Jenkins (Chicago, Ill.) – Knox College

Grayson Kirk (Austin, Texas) – University of Texas at Austin

Henrietta Ransdell (Paducah, Ky.) – University of Louisville

Justin Randle (Coila, Miss.) – Mississippi State University

Isaiah Watson (North Charleston, S.C.) – Vanderbilt University

SeAira Mingo (Waterloo, Iowa) – University of South Alabama

“We are very proud of these students and delighted to help support their education,” said Michele Elrod, head of Regions Corporate Marketing. “Over the last seven years, we’ve received thousands of essays that remind us about the impact of those who came before us and the diversity that inspires students to make a difference in the community.”

“For Regions, education is a key to helping our customers achieve financial stability in the present and to inspiring the leaders of tomorrow through lessons of the past,” said Lajuana Bradford, head of Regions Corporate Social Responsibility. “The essay contest allows us a meaningful way to invest in our communities, to honor Black History Month, and make a difference in the lives of more than 210 students who’ve benefited from the scholarships since 2012.”

Since the inception of the scholarship program in 2012, $892,000 has already been awarded to students to further their educations. In 2018, entries were accepted between Jan. 15 and Feb. 28.

For official rules, complete entry details and eligibility requirements for the 2018 Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest, visit the contest website at

About Regions Financial Corporation

Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE:RF), with $125 billion in assets, is a member of the S&P 500 Index and is one of the nation’s largest full-service providers of consumer and commercial banking, wealth management, and mortgage products and services. Regions serves customers across the South, Midwest and Texas, and through its subsidiary, Regions Bank, operates approximately 1,500 banking offices and 2,000 ATMs. Additional information about Regions and its full line of products and services can be found at


Regions Financial Corporation
Mel Campbell, 205-264-4551
Regions News Online:
Regions News on Twitter: @RegionsNews

Release Summary

Regions Bank announced the 2018 winners of the seventh-annual Regions Riding Forward Scholarship Essay Contest.


Regions Financial Corporation
Mel Campbell, 205-264-4551
Regions News Online:
Regions News on Twitter: @RegionsNews