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Recipients for Inaugural James Buie Scholarship Named

Belmont Abbey College, the Gaston County Police Department and Gaston County Schools are pleased to announce the inaugural recipients of the James Buie Scholarship Program which provides a full scholarship for selected students in pursuit of a Criminal Justice degree at Belmont Abbey College. The program supports two students each year over the next eight years.  Upon completion of their degree and qualifications of the Gaston County Police Department, the GCPD will offer these students full-time employment with the department for a period of not less than five years.

The inaugural recipients are Rebecca Gomez, of Gaston County Schools and Allison Kennedy a rising junior at Belmont Abbey College.

“When I received the news I was really excited and looking forward to working with the Gaston County Police Department. That moment changed my life because law enforcement has always been my career choice,” said awardee Rebecca Gomez, who will graduate this June from the Highland School of Technology.

Gaston County Police Department has established a fund at the College from drug forfeitures. The goal of the scholarship is to increase diversity in the department with minority and female applicants receiving priority. The Police Department, Gaston County Schools and Belmont Abbey will, for the first two years of the program select a current rising junior and one incoming freshman for this prestigious scholarship. The scholarship program is another way to provide assistance for students to attend college as well as promote careers in public service such as law enforcement.

The scholarship is named for Belmont Abbey College alum, James Buie ’86 who was formerly a Chief of the Gaston County Police Department and was the county’s first African-American chief. Buie preceded current Chief Joe Ramey and served the Gaston County Police Department for 29 years.

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