Focus on Students
Donors, Students Attend Annual Scholarship Luncheon

Donations to Chesapeake College continue during recession

Posted on Friday, November 19, 2010

WYE MILLS – Chesapeake College this week highlighted the role that scholarships play in funding education on the Mid-Shore.

Scholarship donors and recipients were brought together on Thursday at Chesapeake’s annual Scholarship Luncheon. Chesapeake’s donors include businesses, community service organizations, charitable foundations, families and individuals.

Despite what is proving to be a difficult period in charitable giving nationally, Chesapeake’s scholarship awards remain steady.

"Our donors are continuing with their tradition of generosity. Most of them tell me that they see contributing to a student’s education as an investment in our economic future," said Director of Resource Development Lauren Halterman.

Dr. Florence Lednum, who retired from teaching biology at Chesapeake College two years ago, continues to support the college through the Alpha Delta Kappa Sorority, Xi Chapter. The teaching sorority funds scholarships at Chesapeake each year. Dr. Lednum spoke on behalf of the donors during the luncheon. She shared stories about students who she saw benefit from scholarships over the years, and encouraged donors to continue supporting Chesapeake.

"Times are tight, but the help you give can make a difference. We can make every bit count," said Dr. Lednum. "A drip here and drop there can build a foundation like the one here at Chesapeake that helps students realize their dreams."

Already this year, more than $340,000 in scholarship aid has been awarded to more than 330 Chesapeake students, according to Director of Financial Aid Mindy Schaffer

One of Chesapeake’s scholarship recipients this year told the luncheon audience that his education would not be possible with the donors’ generosity

Jason Christopher of Preston came to Chesapeake College in 2007 after being laid off. The former Marine said that he felt he had few options and knew that going back to school would offer him the best chance at a viable career. However, he had been out of high school for 10 years and worried that he wouldn’t be able to do the course work.

Money presented an even greater challenge, so Christopher sought help from Chesapeake’s Office of Financial Aid. With persistence and drive, Christopher has worked his way through prerequisite coursework to gain entry into the Physical Therapist Assistant program. Now the father of an infant, Christopher said that even as he conquers academic challenges, the financial challenges still remain.

"I truly don’t think I would be here without the scholarships I received," Christopher said. "I’m grateful to Chesapeake College and the scholarship donors for everything they have done for me. My goals wouldn’t even be possible without the help that I’ve received here."

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