JSI congratulates the winners of the 2014 Staurulakis Family Scholarships, given out as part of the Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) scholarship program. FRS awarded $98,000 for 36 scholarships to rural youth across the United States, and four students were selected to receive the $5,000 FRS Staurulakis Family Scholarships, which give preference to outstanding applicants with an interest in science, math, medicine, or engineering.
Each of the Staurulakis Family Scholarship winners have excelled academically, while volunteering in their communities, holding down jobs and overcoming personal hardships. The four 2014 winners are:
Meribeth Wothe – Nominated by Arvig (MN)
Meribeth knows something about being first. She will graduate first in her class this year, but she also paved the way for other students to take classes above their current grade levels. She pushed to take high school classes as an 8th grade student and began taking college classes as a high school sophomore. Meribeth will study architectural engineering at the University of Colorado, Boulder, in the fall.
Kirsten Moore – Nominated by Coleman County Telephone Coop Inc. (TX)
Kirsten maintained a 3.96 GPA while working as a ranch hand, participating as a cheerleader, serving on student council, volunteering in the community and playing basketball throughout high school. She will attend Sam Houston State University in the fall to study nursing. Kirsten says she became interested in nursing after spending a significant amount of time in the hospital being treated for allergies, asthma, broken bones, sprains and most recently, a torn ligament.
Kennedy George – Nominated by Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative (AL)
Kennedy has been president of her class throughout high school and will graduate number two in her class. She’s been very active in school organizations and has played basketball all four years of high school. Kennedy maintained her 4.0 GPA and busy extracurricular schedule even when her family was dealing with the loss of their house twice – first to a fire in 2010 and then to a tornado in their hometown of Higdon, Ala., in 2011. She plans to go to Jacksonville State University this fall to study neuroscience and hopes to return to Higdon after graduation.
Abigail Domitrovich – Nominated by Ontonagon County Telephone Co. (MI)
Abigail will graduate with a 4.0 GPA and at the top of her class. She served as her class president for two years, played basketball, volleyball and golf, acted as National Honor Society president, volunteered in her community and held a part-time job throughout high school. Abigail has been accepted to Oakland University, where she plans to study nursing.
These scholarships were established as part of JSI’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 2012 and will continue each year as part of the FRS scholarship program. FRS received more than 1,500 applications in 2014, and scholarship recipients were selected by an independent team of reviewers from the education field. To be eligible, recipients must be sponsored by a NTCA member company, and must indicate a desire to return to their rural communities once their collegiate studies have been completed.