Alexus Joyner Earns Boykin & Cashwell Family Scholarships

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[Clinton, N.C.]- As Sampson Community College’s (SCC) Spring 2024 commencement continues to approach, the College looks to highlight graduating Foundation scholars—students who have received one or more scholarships from the SCC Foundation. One of those individuals is Alexus Joyner, a Human Services Technology student who recently received the Boykin Family Heritage and Cashwell Family scholarships for 2023-24.

A 2017 graduate of James Kenan High, Joyner originally pursued a nursing career after high school, but “lost motivation” while in college and dropped out. After moving to Sampson County in 2022, Joyner was determined to return to school for mental health work instead, enrolling at SCC in Fall 2022 to obtain her Associate in Applied Science degree.

She explained, “When I moved to Turkey, I had made it a goal to go back to school, but I no longer wanted to do nursing. I knew that I wanted a career in mental health and started looking up nearby colleges with two-year programs for anything dealing with a type of social work or counseling. I had seen that SCC had a Human Services Technology program and knew it was the place for me.”

In addition to her coursework, Joyner works full-time as a call-center supervisor and is mom to three daughters, Alana, Harmony, and Patience. Considering them to be her “top three motivators,” Joyner remarked that they inspired her to pursue higher education again and complete her degree. Through SCC, she hopes to set an example for them, demonstrating the importance and power of education.

“When I first started here at SCC, I was very nervous,” Joyner shared. “My move to Sampson County was really a new journey for me and I started my new life of being a single mom, so I didn’t really know how I would balance everything. My daughters are the main reason I even decided to go back to school. I feel that it is my duty as their mother to show them how powerful an educated black woman is.”

When asked who she’d like to thank, Joyner expressed her gratitude to Katie Butler, Department Chair of Human Services Technology at SCC. Serving as both her academic advisor and instructor, Butler has been there “every step of the way,” with her support being felt throughout Joyner’s online coursework.

She thanked, “Katie Butler was amazing throughout my entire time here at SCC. Anytime I had a question or concern, she was always there to listen. I never even met her in person, because most of my classes were online, but her warm and helpful attitude was present even over phone calls and emails. She has literally been there every step of the way to help me during my journey.”

Mom-of-three and new Sampson County resident Joyner enrolled at SCC in 2022 to continue pursuing her college degree. (Courtesy Photo)

During the 2023-2024 academic year, Joyner received two scholarships from the SCC Foundation: The Boykin Family Heritage Endowment and The Cashwell Family Endowment. The Boykin Family scholarship was established by Dr. Bertha Boykin Todd, Dr. Myrtle Boykin Sampson, and Mrs. Mary Brown in memory of Junious A. Boykin, James C. Boykin, Thomas J. L. Boykin, and Benjamin J. Boykin.

Similarly, The Cashwell Family Endowment was established by Mr. Gordon Cashwell in memory of Mr. Joseph Leon Cashwell, Sr. and Mrs. Anna Matthis Cashwell. The purpose of both scholarships is to assist deserving students in their educational pursuits at SCC.

Joyner voiced about the awards, “The first day of the semester I was excited, because I knew that I was going to accomplish my goal of finishing no matter how hard it would be. After my first course, I knew that I had finally chosen the perfect career path and college. These scholarships have helped me a lot, because they have decreased the amount of financial aid I needed, which will also help when I go back to school for my bachelors.”

Upon graduating from SCC in Spring 2024, Joyner plans to “jump straight” into the career field, finding an entry-level position in a local community health clinic or social services. In her eyes, the Human Services Technology program has provided her with essential skills that have prepared her for success within the workforce and eventual transfer to a four-year university.

“This degree will open so many more doors for me and I know that it is only the first step towards my career goals,” Joyner closed. “My experience at SCC has taught me that I can really do anything that I put my mind to. Being able to finally graduate college, even if it is just with an associate degree, has really changed my outlook on life. I no longer doubt myself nor my abilities.”

Sampson CC very proud of Alexus for her accomplishments at the College thus far. The Foundation loves seeing the impact scholarships have on students and looks forward to seeing all she will continue to do throughout her career and education.

The deadline to apply for scholarships each year is April 15. Over 100 opportunities are available with just one application. Apply today at

For more information about the SCC Foundation, visit

About Sampson Community College:  Sampson Community College is a member of the North Carolina Community College System, located in Clinton, NC in Sampson County. The college offers many programs to include two-year degrees, college transfer, continuing education and workforce development options and early college education. SCC is committed to the principles of equal educational and employment opportunities for all.