POUGHKEEPSIE – Soon to be graduating Poughkeepsie High School seniors can ease some of the financial burden of college thanks to the generosity of many local benefactors.
During a ceremony on June 9, over 50 students received 75 local scholarships worth more than $100,000 some of which were created specifically for PHS students, including Board of Education scholarships. The amount does not include QuestBridge or Gates Scholars previously announced. They include the Lorraine M. Petty Roberts Collegiate Scholarship, awarded to a student who demonstrates a commitment to community service and the recently created Franky Perez Appletree Scholarship, for a student who demonstrates the same passion and determination toward education as the beloved PHS counselor, after whom it was named.
Rick VanScoyk, PHS math teacher and graduation chair, presented many of the awards to students, commending them for the amount of work they put into earning the awards and district staff for helping write recommendation letters and being a reference.
“They deserve all of the accolades that come with it,” VanScoyk said. “Congratulations to all of the award winners.”
VanScoyk encouraged the seniors to pursue their dreams, try nearly everything once and never hesitate to ask for help.
“Most people want you to succeed and you can do it,” VanScoyk said. “The world is ready for you to explore it, are you ready for it?”
Academic Excellence AwardsNoell Jones received over five scholarships, including the Officer Falcone Memorial Award, which fits in nicely with her pursuit of a criminal justice degree at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania. She was happy and proud to receive these distinctions. “College is very important to me and it’s a huge priority,” Jones said. “I never expected to make it this far.”
Jones thanked her teachers for all of their support and guidance over the years.
“They’ve been so important to me,” Jones said. “I don’t think I would be here without them.”
Tanaireo Nelson was one of three students to receive the Kappa Alpha Psi Foundation Achievement Scholarship which will help him pay for his tuition to St. Thomas Aquinas College where he plans to major in finance and business administration. He thanked the people who helped him get a scholarship. “They’ve got a good heart and believe in students,” Nelson said of the benefactors. “It’s a real blessing.”“They’ve been so important to me,” Jones said.