It was the fall of 2016, and Bayfield High School senior Joey Sandrey was struggling. The highly accomplished student was facing challenging personal issues that colored his whole life.
“It was hard to stay focused,” Joey says. For just about the first time ever, Joey turned in assignments late or incomplete. He had to withdraw from band and cross-country to try to give schoolwork the attention it needed.
Fortunately, Joey’s final months at BHS turned out to be far from disastrous. Counselor Amy Miglinas helped him through the difficult times. And, “My teachers were very understanding about the limits I had at the moment,” Joey remembers. His friends also noticed Joey was struggling and keeping to himself more than usual. “They were wonderful, though, and made sure that I knew they cared about me.”
Hard work and perseverance—along with support from many—got Joey through the academic year with his terrific track record intact. He knew he wanted to go to school in California and was accepted at several highly regarded universities like U.C. Berkeley, Loyola and Pepperdine. But Joey chose a much smaller school, California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, just north of Los Angeles.
Cal Lutheran is home to just over 4,000 students. Its welcoming, friendly campus and small class sizes are attributes you don’t find in many colleges. Joey says there’s a real community feeling about the place, and a genuine desire to help each student with whatever they need—even extra food if they run short.
The Bayfield Education Foundation was delighted to assist Joey get started at Cal Lutheran last fall with a $500 scholarship. He’s receiving aid from his university, but there are still bills to pay. The scholarship, “Helped lower my out of pocket costs,” he says.
What’s next for the BHS grad? Joey is majoring in biology with a pre-med concentration and plans to be a neurosurgeon one day. He has a paid internship in a psychiatrist’s office, setting up appointments and handling medical records. There’s a prospect of a second internship, assisting a neurosurgical resident with lab work.
“I’m really hoping for that one,” Joey confides.
We hope he gets it too.