Congratulations 2021 Scholarship Winners

For 29 years, through the generosity of members of the community, the North East Community Foundation has been helping make students' dreams come true. Last year alone, more than $24,000 in scholarships were given to further the education of local students.

This year, scholarships established through the North East Community Foundation went to:

Elizabeth Walker and Carter Hassenplug were awarded the James R. Meehl Memorial Scholarship. Meehl graduated from NEHS is 1944 and went on to study engineering at Cornell University. He was the owner of Eureka Electrical Products, Inc. and an active volunteer in the North East Community.

Vivianna Gordon received a $1,500 scholarship established in 1997 from the estate of Dorothy Bertges-Thornton.

Hannah Shickler, who plans to become a teacher, received a scholarship established by Bruce Perdue in honor of his late wife Lenora Jane Perdue, who was a special education teacher.

Sicily Alcorn, Alexandria Damond and Alexander Fisher were each awarded $500 scholarships in memory of Gerri Smith, a founding member of the NECF and active member of the North East Chamber of Commerce, North East Arts Council and North East Historical Society.

Cole Lanahan, Isaiah Swan and Carter Hassenplug were this year’s recipients of the Richard Gorzynski Memorial Scholarship. Gorzynski was stricken with cancer at age 48. The scholarship recognizes athletes with the same competitive drive, educational self-discipline and leadership qualities as Gorzynski.

Taylor Urban was awarded the Charles Barton Nursing Scholarship, established in memory of Judy Barton, who worked as registered nurse in the North East School District.

Scholarship funds allow a donor to define the advisory committee, guidelines for candidate selection, award use and advisory committee. They can benefit a particular educational institution or field of study.

Ian Malesiewski decided to partner with NECF in 2020 to create the DefIANt Scholars Program to help students with disabilities attend college.

“I chose the Community Foundation because of their history, knowledge, and accessibility, which made establishing the scholarship quick and easy,” said Malesiewski, an athlete who sustained a spinal cord injury and is now attending the University of Miami.

To find out more about how to establish a scholarship fund, contact NECF at (814) 882-5594 or