by Hannah Fair, Student Public Relations Writer
For Cedarville junior Andrew Sims, life has been about home — from moving in with his youth pastor as a teen, to finding a place at Cedarville University, to recently discovering a new home, the U.S. Capitol.
Sims, the 2016 Foster Care Scholarship recipient, is currently interning with Sen. Robert Portman (R-OH) in Washington, D.C., for the fall 2018 semester.
Cedarville’s Foster Care Scholarship is an annual full-tuition scholarship for one new student who has been in the foster care system and plans to pursue an undergraduate education.
Sims, a junior political science major, grew up in Gallipolis, Ohio. He alternated between living with his grandparents and parents, but due to difficult home circumstances, he eventually moved in with his youth pastor’s family.
Although Sims was not living in a foster care home and was not a ward of the state, an exception was made due to his situation. After an interview with Cedarville’s president, Dr. Thomas White, Sims was selected to receive the Foster Care Scholarship.
“I knew that God wanted me at Cedarville, and he provided in miraculous ways,” said Sims. “The community that Cedarville offers is so distinct and Christ-centered; it is a huge reason why I went there. I feel God’s presence on campus and I know that their theology is biblically sound. The professors in the history and government department are intentional in making sure that students understand the material.”
In his internship, Sims answers phone calls and emails from constituents and passes on messages to Sen. Portman. He also does legislative work and helps legislative aides. “I was just asked to read the new trade agreement and summarize the changes that will occur in international agriculture,” Sims related. He also leads tours through the Capitol, home of the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate.
“Andrew is a thoughtful, compassionate individual that sees the good in all that comes into his life,” said Dr. David Rich, professor of public administration and political science and advisor for Sims’ Washington, D.C., internship. “Andrew’s testimony is that of a difficult beginning followed by hope that only can be found in Christ.”
Sims reflected on how this scholarship has opened so many doors for him: “I have grown so much spiritually and academically; being at Cedarville has blessed me with new connections and friendships with people that I would not have otherwise.”
Sims plans to earn a master’s degree in public policy from either Ohio State University or Michigan State University. His long-term goal is to become a U.S. Representative for Ohio.
“Cedarville is a great school because it intentionally cares about students made evident in the D.C. internship opportunities, chapel and its focus on growing students’ relationships with Christ,” said Sims. “All of the opportunities to grow proves how much Cedarville cares about its students.”
To be considered for the Foster Care Scholarship, students typically must be in the custody of either a foster home or a ward of the state, meet all admissions requirements and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) annually. More information can be found online at http://www.cedarville.edu/financialaid/Foster-Care-Scholarship.
Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 4,193 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 150 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit www.cedarville.edu.