Ashleigh Cote

2018 Gardiner High School
$2500 Market Decisions Research Mainely Character Scholarship

Poetry and determination helped her overcome major family challenges.

Ashleigh’s parents were addicts.  She grew up taking care of herself when her parents were high. One day when she was in eighth grade , a drug dealer brandishing a gun came to her house to collect money. Terrified, Ashleigh confided in a teacher, knowing the result might mean she could be taken from her family.  She was placed in a foster family. When her dad was released from prison a little over a year later, she moved in with his family. Ashleigh found her voice by competing in “Poetry Out Loud,” and was named Gardiner Area High School Poet Laureate. She discovered high school drama, participating in seven plays, as cast member or backstage crew. She held a  part-time job and spent time with her much younger half-brother, Joshua. She enrolled at the University of Maine at Augusta, studying English and social work.

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