The $2,500 first-prize check couldn’t have come at a better time for OTC student Dylan Hall of Nixa.
Hall was working two jobs and selling his plasma in order to make ends meet when he learned he had was the grand-prize winner in the Missouri Lottery’s “Tools 4 School: The A+ Giveaway” promotion.
The random drawing was held from a field of current and former A+ scholarship recipients who entered the promotion. Hall’s name was pulled as the top winner.
Hall said he entered the contest while lying in bed one night. He had to write a sentence about what the A+ program did for him.
“Thanks to A+, I am able to attend OTC and not have to worry about anything except books – which allows me to save up my extra earnings to put towards my four-year college fund,” Hall wrote.
The 20-year-old forgot about the contest until he was sitting in class one day looking at his email.
“I found an email that said I had won,” he said. “I had to read it a couple of times. I asked the student next to me to read it to make sure I was reading it right. I had never won anything.”
It not only was a big windfall for Hall but also for two other OTC students. The others included $1,000 winner Lindsey Bilyeu of Chadwick and $400 winner Jacob Shoemaker of Springfield.
Hall isn’t sure what he will do with the money but for now it’s going in the bank since he’s been pulling money out for living expenses. The money will give him a chance to bill up his nest egg.
Up until he won, Hall has been making ends meet by making regular trips to a local plasma center to sell his plasma.
“I get a check for $200 each month so it helps with the expenses. I’m on my own and going to school,” he said.
The whole experience has been a learning lesson for Hall.
“Enter those contests,” he said “And no one should pass up the change to be part of the A+ program.”
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