The Share America Foundation has named Indiana teen Victoria Griffin as the recipient of their Pearl and Floyd Franks Scholarship for 2022. These awards are made to assist young people with an interest in Appalachian music with their college education.
Share America was founded by actor and fiddler Randall Franks, known for his portrayal of Officer Randy Goode in the television series, In The Heat of the Night, which aired for seven years in the late 1980s and early ’90s. The scholarship is named in honor of his parents.
Victoria was overjoyed to receive this award.
“Thank you to the Share America Foundation for The Pearl and Floyd Franks Scholarship. I’m excited to say this scholarship fund will assist me in pursuing my education at Indiana University Southeast in the field of nursing. I will also continue to study music as it will always hold a special place in my heart and life. Thank you again to Share America for making this possible!”
She also shared a bit about how she started with music, and how she understands its power.
“It was my mother’s choice for me to play. However, at the age of eighteen, the violin has become my passion and my choice. I believe there is no better God given gift than to make a person’s day a little brighter. Its fluidity to be many things to many people makes music the most powerful tool at our fingertips.
I believe that when God gives you a gift, you better use it for Him, which is what I plan on continuing to do. To me, music is a lifeline to people of all ages, all races, and all backgrounds. It’s therapy for the terminal, the lullaby for a baby, and the means of expression for true love. My ability to play the violin has given me the opportunity to bring a smile to the face of strangers to, in all of its simplicity, make people happy. Music to me is the light at the end of the tunnel; the warmth of a fire on the coldest night. It warms a heart like the comfort of a friend and proves through its uplifting melodies that, yes, hope is not far away.”
Griffin is hoping to find a way to incorporate her fiddling into musical therapy after she completes her nursing training.
Franks speaks quite highly of their latest scholarship recipient.
“Victoria has an amazing vision for the future of her talents. Our board is proud to be a small part of the success we know she will define for her future.”
Congratulations to Victoria, and hats off to Randall Franks and the Share America Foundation for their work with young musicians. The scholarships are funded by individual donations and proceeds from concerts and recordings Franks makes with young artists.