On Monday, August 26, Mr. Scott Goodman of Tifton made a contribution to the Southern Regional Technical College Foundation to fund a scholarship in memory of his mother, Mrs. Veda Pitts Goodman. Mrs. Goodman was a well-known cosmetologist in Tifton for over 40 years. She started her own shop in the 1940s in the Myon Hotel complex, now Tifton City Hall, and moved to Park Place Plaza some years later. After the death of her first husband, Bill Pitts, in 1968, Veda was left with three children to raise. She merged her shop with her best friend, Jennette Eilis Handy, and moved to Love Avenue. According to her son, “Veda had an amazing work ethic. Nothing came before getting to work on time and satisfying every customer.”
Mrs. Goodman met Scott’s father, Buddy Goodman, in 1971. “When my dad died in 1985, it left Veda with me, a 15 year-old very spoiled child,” admits Scott. Being self-employed, Mrs. Goodman had no benefits and knew raising a teenage boy would require providing insurance and being able to afford tuition. As a result, she retired from the job she loved at 56-years-old to work in a local factory, which provided insurance coverage. “Veda made so many sacrifices to be my mother, and she didn’t have to,” explains Scott. “Veda didn’t give birth to me. She met my father when I was six months old. She didn’t have to be my mother. She didn’t have to feed me, to clothe me, to be sure I got to school. But she did. She had no obligation to me, yet she was my mother in every sense of that word.”
Mrs. Goodman, who died in January, never lost her love for doing hair, being with the customers, and hearing all the stories. “She was loving, yet tough, and always honest,” says Scott. “I remember sitting in the shop as a seven-year-old child hearing her say, ‘Mrs. Smith, your face is too small for this big hair. We’re going to cut this today.’ Mrs. Smith never blinked an eye – she got a haircut that day.”
The $500 Veda Pitts Goodman Memorial Scholarship will be offered to one SRTC cosmetology student studying at the Tifton campus this Spring. “It’s our hope that this scholarship becomes an annual tradition,” says SRTC Foundation director Jenny Dell. “When generous community members like Mr. Goodman come forward to support local students, everyone wins.” Eligible students may apply for the scholarship online at www.southernregional.edu beginning October 15, 2019.
For more information on the SRTC Foundation, how to give, and how to apply, please visit our website at www.southernregional.edu/scholarships, or contact the Institutional Advancement Office at (229) 227-2415.