by Sarah Steighner
While Ford City and Kittanning High School’s have officially closed, their students are still being recognized throughout the community.
The Worthington Borough/West Franklin Joint Parks and Recreation Authority (WWFJPRA) awarded a 2015 graduate of Ford City and Kittanning each the “Albert B. Croyle Scholarship” on Tuesday evening.
Yuri Panchik (Ford City) and Taylor Wright (Kittanning) were the chosen recipients of the $500 scholarship.
Chairman of the WWFJPRA, William Hodak, and Albert Croyle personally presented Wright the scholarship money at the Worthington Civic Center amongst her family and other board members.
Panchik was unable to attend and will be awarded his scholarship at a later date.
Now a graduate of Kittanning High School, Wright plans to attend Clarion University in the Fall to study nursing.
“Overall, I just want to be an OB (Obstetrics) nurse. I might go on and do Nurse Practitioner,” Wright said.
While having her career path and goals for Clarion mapped out, Wright was also extremely involved during her time at Kittanning High School.
“I did Student Council, this year I got into National Honors Society. I was in Quiz Bowl. I did Volleyball and Track and Field,” Wright said.
Along with the “Albert B. Croyle Scholarship,” Wright has been awarded two additional scholarships.
“I got two (scholarships) from Clarion. One was a writing essay. You went there and had an hour or two, to write down what their motto meant to you. Another was an academic one for $1,000,” Wright said.
Croyle explained the history of how this opportunity came to be.
“Someone in Pittsburgh got a hold of Bill (WWFJPRA Chairman William Hodak) and told him they wanted to start a scholarship program for residents of Worthington and West Franklin Township, and they wanted to call it the “Albert Croyle Scholarship.” We don’t know who it is. They give $500 every year to keep it going. The Board does some fundraising to build it up some,” Croyle said.
Croyle described some of the qualifications that each applicant must meet which included being a graduating senior, a current resident of Worthington Borough or West Franklin Township, and also have been accepted to a college, university, trade, or technical school.
“There was an application process that’s based on scholastic achievements, participation in school activities, and most of it relies on community service. The person who did this, (the anonymous donor) wanted to do this because of my many years of community service,” Croyle said.
Croyle has held numerous positions in the community over the years and is still involved helping out with services to the community.
“Years ago I was the Mayor here, involved with the Legion, and chairman of the Board for several years,” Croyle said.
The Board is the administrator of funds for the scholarship and also reviews the applications. Along with the specific qualifications each applicant must meet, they were also required to write an essay.
In spirit of the scholarship being in recognition of Croyle’s community service, the essay question required applicants to describe their chosen major, career aspirations, and future goals.
The scholarship is expected to be an annual opportunity for qualified residents of the Worthington Borough and West Franklin Township in years to come.