Aroostook Aspirations Initiative has a new Development and Communications Assistant. Nicole Duplessis is a 2012 graduate of Van Buren District Secondary School. She received her Bachelor of Science in Mass Communications degree from Husson University’s New England School of Communications. Most recently, Nicole worked as a reporter at WAGM-TV, where she was an intern prior to her senior year of college. She was also a freelance writer for The Star Herald and The Aroostook Republican during part of her college career. 

Duplessis says “Staying in Aroostook County is a goal of mine. Being involved with County folks and youth is intriguing to me, and I’m excited to work with AAI and make a positive difference for so many people.”

Kristen Wells, Executive Director of AAI said, "I'm so excited to have Nicole join our Aroostook Aspirations team. She comes with a solid background in communications, great energy and ambition, and a love for Aroostook County. Nicole will help us secure the funding we need to support the increase in the number of Gauvin Scholars entering our program, implement new programming for students educational and professional success, and build opportunities for young people to live and work in Aroostook County."

Nicole Duplessis/Gauvin Fund

AAI was founded in 2013 by Ray and Sandy Gauvin. AAI’s mission is to support the educational and career goals of the youth of Aroostook County, and to mobilize the future prosperity of the County. AAI provides scholarships as well as guidance, trainings, and professional development support for high school graduates in Aroostook County, through their college careers. AAI welcomed its third class in May 2016 and will grow significantly in 2017 to offer as many as 50 scholarships.

AAI has a 19 member Board of Directors that represents each region of The County and Maine, maintains partners with all 16 Aroostook public school districts, Northern Maine Community College, the University of Maine at Presque Isle, Husson University and the University of Maine at Fort Kent. AAI values its strategic partnerships with Aroostook County businesses including the Bangor Daily News, Pineland Farms, Katahdin Trust, The Aroostook Medical Center, WAGM-TV and Cary Medical Center.

Gauvin Fund

If you would like to learn more about this innovative program, visit, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter AAI/GauvinFund or e-mail them at Donations can be made online, in person at AAI, 754 Main Street Presque Isle, or by mail: 26 North Street Box 138, Presque Isle, ME 04769.


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