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Waldorf College Announces Winner of Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship

Anthony Cornealius

The Waldorf College Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship means a great deal to Paula Bloom who sees her scholarship as providing “endless opportunities.”

The probation supervisor for Shelby County (Ala.) said she plans to explore those opportunities by applying the scholarship to an online degree from Waldorf, a liberal arts college based in Forest City, Iowa. Waldorf offers residential and online, regionally accredited bachelor’s degrees.

The Hero Behind the Hero scholarship, which honors the spouses and children of active-duty public safety personnel (firefighters, law enforcement officers, EMTs and dispatchers) and military men and women, covers tuition for up to 24 months for one specific degree program with Waldorf.

“I have to make a living and this scholarship means that my current job will remain secure and there will be many more opportunities for promotions, but to me the most important thing is how this degree will help me in the most important role of all, human service,” said Bloom, who is the wife of Shelby County Deputy Patrick Bloom.

“I’ve said so many times over the years that I wanted to go back to school but, like most women who start families young, life gets in the way. You have to go to work and raise children. Those children grow up and need you, your spouse needs you and all of sudden, you look back and 15 years have gone by and your dreams are put on the back burner,” she explained. But when the opportunity came to apply to this scholarship, Bloom said “something told me to move this time, so I just moved and as a result I got it!”

She plans to use the scholarship to pursue an online degree in organizational leadership from Waldorf.

“I currently work in a support position in my organization. I would like to progress in my current employment, seek even greater job opportunities and use this degree to serve my community.”

Her sense of services stems from her childhood. “I have always known that I would one day be a missionary, involved in the Peace Corps or be an advocate for mankind. In any form of mission work you need laborers, you need skilled professionals, i.e. doctors, teachers, nurses, etc., but you also need leadership.

“This is where I feel I would be the most valuable. I want to lead and motivate people to see their potential and be their very best,” she said.

Learn more about Waldorf online degrees at!