The Education Scholarship Foundation of the Virginia, Maryland & Delaware Association of Electric Cooperatives recently awarded more than $68,000 in college scholarships to deserving students for the 2022-23 school year.
The recipients are students whose parents live in areas served by electric cooperatives in the three states.
“This year, we had another group of extremely well-qualified students,” said Russell G. “Rusty” Brown, chair of the VMDAEC Education Scholarship Foundation Board and representative from Northern Neck Electric Cooperative. “Electric cooperatives support their communities, and this is another way we can help — by endowing the future of co-op leaders and furthering their educations.”
The Foundation awarded Worth Hudson Scholarships of $1,000 each to 41 students. They are named in honor of Worth Hudson, the first chairman of the VMDAEC Education Scholarship Foundation Board and former chairman of the board of directors at Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative in Chase City, Va.
The Foundation also approved three cooperative-specific scholarships. One Gertrude Winston Memorial Scholarship in the amount of $1,000 was awarded to Champions for Christ senior Karissa Smith in the Rappahannock Electric Cooperative service territory. The program was established in memory of the mother of longtime REC board member Richard Oliver.
The C. D Hypes Memorial Scholarship in the amount of $1,500 was awarded to James River High School senior Levi Miller in the Craig-Botetourt Electric Cooperative service area. Hypes was an educator and a board member at New Castle, Va.-based CBEC.
Made possible by a generous ongoing donation from Leslie and Larry Cook of Delaware, Cook Scholarships of $1,000 each were awarded to five students in the Delaware Electric Cooperative service territory: Nicholas Gach, Polytech High School; Clara Hoffman, Caesar Rodney High School; Caelynn Rees-Jorgensen, Sussex Academy; Eve Sekscinski, Milford Senior High School; and Alissa Silva, Cape Henlopen High School.
The Foundation’s highest award, the Roberta I. Harlowe Scholarship, in the amount of $2,000 was awarded to Nelson County High School senior Candace Fitzgerald in the Central Virginia Electric Cooperative service area. Roberta Harlowe and her husband, Bill, made a historic donation starting the Foundation’s first endowment fund to secure our future for generations to come. Harlowe’s initial endowment of $25,000 has recently been supplemented by donations from CVEC’s Firefly Fiber Broadband and CoBank to exceed $50,000, which will be set aside to provide a permanent financial foundation for the Association’s charitable works.
Since 2001, the Foundation has provided over 900 scholarships totaling more than $900,000 to aspiring college students as well as to the next generation of electric lineworkers.
“We congratulate these students and hope that their futures are bright,” said Brian S. Mosier, president and CEO of the Virginia, Maryland & Delaware Association of Electric Cooperatives. “Whether it’s a life in college after high school or a career in the trades, you can count on the electric cooperatives across the mid-Atlantic to support our students.”
Scholarship recipients are chosen based on a competitive screening process that considers financial need (40%), academic achievement (40%) and community involvement and personal history (20%). Applicants must be seniors graduating from either high school or home-school in the year during which they apply.
They must also provide evidence of their acceptance into a post-high school educational institution or program. These grants can be used to pay for tuition, fees and books.
The Foundation is funded through tax-deductible donations and bequests from individuals, proceeds from fundraising events and CoBank’s Sharing Success Program. For information on donating to the Foundation, please visit vmdaec.com/scholarship.