From the McKinley School PTO:
The McKinley Elementary PTO Scholarship was presented to two Westfield High School seniors in recognition of their outstanding achievements both in the classroom and in our community. This inaugural scholarship was made possible by McKinley School parents, as part of funds raised by the PTO’s annual McKinley Social Fundraiser. The scholarship was awarded to McKinley alum who continue to live the motto of "Grow Our Hearts and Our Minds."
We are pleased to announce this year's recipients:
Anastasia Fowler is a graduate of McKinley Elementary School, Edison Middle School, and Westfield High School. This fall she will be attending Bates College as an English Major, where she will be playing lacrosse and also hopes to sing in one of Bates' a cappella groups. Anastasia is not only a multisport athlete, she is also a beatboxer in the elite Choraleers/Chorale and the all-girl a capella group Blue Devil Treble. In addition, she has held multiple leadership and volunteer roles including being a founder in WHS Lunch Ambassadors Program (a student-led initiative to foster a culture of kindness and inclusion) and founder/school representative for the WHS Chapter of BE STRONG advocacy program (a national nonprofit program empowering youth to prevent bullying, social isolation, and suicide). She attributes her open-mindedness, well-rounded and compassionate nature to her time at McKinley, writing "I celebrate Ms. Toulios and McKinley community who helped me grow my heart and mind (and) I am now in a position to help others do the same. The desire to grow my own and others' hearts and minds has led me to stand up for others. Without McKinley, I never would have understood that in order to better yourself and the world around you, you have to take risks and be willing to see yourself in many ways." Congratulations to Anastasia and the entire Class of 2020!
Casimir Malek is a graduate of McKinley Elementary School, Edison Middle School and Westfield High School. This fall he will be attending Mason Gross at Rutgers University, having been accepted into their Bachelor of Fine Arts program in Theater Design and Production. He has been a vital part of all Edison and Westfield High School Theatre Productions both on stage and behind the scenes, most recently serving as Head of Tech Crew and Production Coordinator. In addition, Casimir has played and held multiple leadership roles in his rugby club. Casimir credits finding his love of theatre and production from his participation in Kapers. He writes: "It all started at McKinley. As a tiny seedling there, my heart and my mind were nurtured and encouraged to grow, to be the person I am, and to pursue my interest in theater. Who would have thought that Kapers would have lit the spark for my future career? Through the nurturing and positive energy of the McKinley teachers and parents who cared, it became so much more....my future career." Congratulations to Casimir and the entire Class of 2020!
The Scholarship Committee would like to thank all of this year's applicants for taking the time to apply. We recognize the unique challenges the Class of 2020 has faced and wish all of our alum success and hope they remember they will always be an important part of our community.