News and Announcements

SCC employee creates scholarship to honor great-aunt

Oct 31 2018

By: Kaitlyn Carver

SYLVA – For SCC employee and Macon County native Tyler Cook, his aunt’s lasting legacy was a cause worth fighting for.

Cook’s great aunt, Eva McCall, was a Macon county native, a beautician by trade and an author with passion. She wrote several novels throughout her life, publishing her first in 1997, even inspiring Cook to become an author himself.

“Endowing this scholarship is just a small way to honor Eva, who did more for me than I could ever repay her for,” said Cook.
From left to right: Brett L. Woods, Tyler Cook, and President Don Tomas.

At the time of McCall’s passing in November 2017, Cook and his family decided the best way to honor his great aunt would be to create a scholarship in her name dedicated to helping aspiring writers get their education.

“The day of her memorial service was the day we decided to create the scholarship,” said Cook. “It took off pretty quickly from there; a GoFundMe page was created, and we campaigned on social media. We also mailed out hundreds of letters to Eva’s family and friends, which wouldn’t have been possible without my grandmother, Susie Stanley, and her connections.”

The first recipient of the scholarship was Macon County resident Emily Pignona, chosen in June for the 2018-2019 school year.
Macon County resident Emily Pignona, the first recipient of the Eva McCall Memorial Scholarship.

“We admire Tyler for his determination in making this scholarship happen,” said Brett Woods, director of the SCC Foundation. “It’s important to share his story because it goes to show how just one determined person can make a difference in the lives of students. This scholarship will help students for years to come.”

For more information about this scholarship, visit, or contact Brett Woods at b_woods[at]southwesterncc[dot]edu.