One of the most eye-roll worthy phrases I hear is, “According to a nationwide survey…”. Nationwide surveys, as a general rule, don’t exactly parallel with Aroostook County. Degree attainment here is much lower, gas prices are much higher, and it seems that regardless of the topic we are not truly represented by the survey findings. There is, however, a new nationwide study that bears great news for Aroostook natives. The study shows that Aroostook County kids are more likely to make more money in their lifetime than kids in an average county. County kids growing up in a poor families can make $1,460 more a year by age 26, compared with an average American county. In a community with a poverty level of almost 17%, that’s incredible news and shows there is great opportunity here in Aroostook County.
You can find the full article and study here: http://bangordailynews.com/2015/05/05/the-point/if-you-grew-up-the-county-theres-a-good-chance-youll-make-more-money-later-in-life/
While we at Aroostook Aspirations are excited by this article and what it means in regards to slowing the outward migration of our youth and keeping our students local, we wanted to know why our current scholars chose to stay here in The County. Their answers prove that kids love Aroostook and want to stay here, but we, as a community, need to show them they can stay and be successful.
Gauvin Scholars, why do you #chooseAroostook?
“The people and the environment are familiar and friendly. I’ve always lived here and want to stay and help support the community. This is where my family is!” -Katelynn Perkins, Presque Isle’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“Aroostook is my home and this is where my family is. This place has made me into a caring and helpful person. I always want to be here. It is just a great place to live.”-Nicholas Belanger, Ashland’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“This is my home. My roots started here, so they’ll end here too.”-Stephanie Hammond, Easton’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“I choose Aroostook because of how close the people are and how nice and friendly everyone is. Everyone is always willing to help you. This is the place for me because this is where I’ve grown up…it’s my home and I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else.”-Brittany Drost, Mars Hill’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“Aroostook is my home, there is no place that I would rather be. I simply love everything about The County!”-Shyanna Smith, Fort Fairfield’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“I’ve lived here my whole life and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. This is where I’m from, and this is where I belong.”-Meghan Hebert, Hodgdon’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
“Aroostook County is a rural area with a modest population. I chose Aroostook because of the people and the sense of community. The people are incredible, generous, hard-working and kind. Aroostook County is a very safe place to live and I can’t think of another place that I’d rather raise a family.”-Andrew White, Washburn’s 2014 Gauvin Scholar
Where you grow up matters and according to a nationwide survey, Aroostook County is a great place to do it. Showing our kids that you can succeed (and can make more money!) in Aroostook County is important. Share with us, your kids, cousins, students, neighbors, babysitters, and fast food service clerks why you #choosearoostook.
Want to help more students like our Gauvin Scholars choose Aroostook? Donate today! Your $10 a month can help dozens of Aroostook students achieve their dreams right here in the County. Go to our “Donate!” page above, or go to http://www.gauvinfund.org to find out more information about what we at Aroostook Aspirations Initiative do. You are part of the solution!