By Lisa R. RhodesMay 24, 2012
FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. (May 24, 2012) -- The Officers' Spouses' Club awarded five graduating high school seniors, one college student and a military spouse a total of more than $5,000 in scholarships at the organization's annual Scholarship Award Ceremony on May 15.
The informal two-hour gathering was held at the home of Garrison Commander Col. Edward C. Rothstein and his wife, Audrey, an advisor to the club.
Scholarships were presented by Col. Rothstein; Patricia Hagerty, chairperson of the OSC scholarship committee; and Navy Rear Adm. William Leigher, director of the Navy staff's Warfare Integration for Information Dominance at the Pentagon.
The club awarded the Etta Baker Memorial Scholarship for High School Seniors; Merit Scholarship for Continued Learning; JROTC Scholarship for High School Seniors; and the OSC Military Spouse Scholarship.
For at least three decades, the OSC has awarded scholarships to high school and college students that, in addition to academics, consider involvement in school activities and community service.
Proceeds from OSC events such as last month's Old Joe Golf Tournament and the MerryMart Craft Fair in November 2011, as well as other fundraisers throughout the year, provide funds for the scholarships.
Depending on the scholarship, applicants were required to have either a minimum 2.5 or 3.0 grade point average and submit a 500- to 600-word essay about their educational and career goals.
"We're all very proud of every one of them," Hagerty said of the winners. "They're all unique."
In his remarks to the students, Rothstein praised them for their hard work while cautioning them "not to take yourself too seriously" as they pursue their educational goals.
"Try to take the balance in all you're doing and enjoy it," he said.
Before the ceremony, students and parents chatted over hors d'oeuvres and later ate a celebratory cake.
"This is so exciting to have a room full of students," said Michele Hausman, outgoing OSC president, of the event. "We're all so proud of all of you."
Annalisa Irby and Kinza Shah, two graduating seniors at Meade High School, and Roger Isom Jr., a graduating senior at Broadneck High School in Annapolis, were the recipients of the Etta Baker Memorial Scholarship.
"It's really great that people are helping me," said Irby, 18, who was awarded a $2,000 scholarship from the OSC. "It was a good surprise."
Class valedictorian, Irby also received a $2,000 matching scholarship from the Armed Forces Communications Electronics Association, an international organization dedicated to supporting professionals in the fields of information technology, communications and electronics for the defense, homeland security and intelligence communities.
Irby, whose father is Chief Warrant Officer 3 Jonathan Irby, 741th Military Intelligence Battalion, resides in Potomac Place and will attend Arizona State University with a major in biology and animal behavior.
Shah, whose father is Sgt. 1st Class Abid Shah, 20th Support Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, resides in Meuse Forest.
"I feel really grateful," said the 17-year-old who was awarded a $1,250 scholarship and plans to study speech therapy at Towson University.
Isom, who resides at the Naval Academy in Annapolis where his father, Capt. Roger Isom Sr., serves as chief diversity officer, received a $750 scholarship.
He plans to study exercise science and Spanish at McDaniel University in Westminster.
"I'm excited; I can't stop smiling," the 18-year-old said. "It's a good feeling to know your hard work has paid off."
Recipients of the Merit Scholarship were Thomas Chapman, a graduating senior at South River High School in East Edgewater; Emily Moesner, a graduating senior at Archbishop Spaulding High School in Severn who was unable to attend the ceremony; and Shah's older sister, Sabrina, a junior at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.
"I feel so grateful, I'm just excited," said Shah, 21, a psychology and media/communications major. "This is really going to push and motivate me to continue to study in graduate school."
Chapman, son of Col. Karen Gibson, commander of the 704th MI Brigade, will use his $500 scholarship to study physics or business at Towson University.
"I'm very happy. I'm very honored to win," said Chapman, 18, who resides in Crofton.
Tyler Gness, a graduating senior at Annapolis High School enrolled in the Navy Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps, was the recipient of the $500 JROTC Scholarship.
Son of retired Lt. Cmdr. Peter Gness, he will attend Ohio State University with plans to study Arabic.
"I'm very happy," the 18-year-old said. "It is definitely going to help."
Taylor Smith, recipient of the $500 Military Spouse Scholarship, will pursue an associate degree in nursing at Anne Arundel Community College.
Smith resides in Potomac Place with her husband, Pfc. Colton Smith, a radiology specialist at Kimbrough Ambulatory Care Center, and their 3-week-old son Memphis.
"I'm very honored," she said. "It's amazing."