$4000 in Scholarships Awarded to Windsor Park High School Seniors

WNPA Scholarship Recipients being recognized at our May meeting. From left to right: Nelda Hinojosa, Redie Mumbili, Isabella Hansen, and Miranda Stell with our Schools Committee Chair, Juan Pablo Martinez.

By Juan Pablo Martinez and Gloria Neunaber, Schools Committee

The WPNA recognized five scholarship recipients at our May meeting.  It was rewarding to see our winners stand in front of a large crowd of neighbors as they cheered for the accomplishments of these graduating high school seniors who live within our boundaries.    Because of the generosity of many individuals and the Austin Mennonite Church, this year we were able to award three $1000 and two $500 scholarships.  

Jeanette Swenson and Meghan Dougherty also attended the Awards Night at Reagan High School on May 12th where Meghan presented WPNA scholarships. After 3 years of offering scholarships to Reagan Raiders, Counselors Wilton Harris and Cheryl Sawyer noted that our neighborhood support makes a difference!  We were happy that we could include a LASA student in our awards this year,  and we hope that next year WPNA will receive applications from LBJ students who live within the boundaries of our neighborhood.  

We want to share some excerpts from the scholarship essays, in which students were asked to describe people who had an impact on their lives, or how community service had impacted them:

Eberardo Jaimes (Reagan, attended Bluebonnet ES and Pearce; going to Texas State University)

“The truth is that we are a strong, growing community that been through good and bad, but has stuck together through it all. With all the new growth in our community, it is up to us young adults to keep and fortify the culture that is already established…and to not allow it to disappear over time.”

Isabella Hansen (LASA, attended Lee ES and Ann Richards MS; going to Georgetown University)

“I share my effort, time, and abilities all in hopes of expressing appreciation for our planet and global community. I believe it is my greatest privilege to live in such a spectacularly diverse world among countless beautiful people…service will be a significant part of my lifestyle no matter what path I take or what cause calls for my attention.”

Miranda Stell (Reagan, attended Wesley School, Trinity Child Development Center, Blanton, and Pearce; going to Angelo State University)

“Miss Smallwood was my first grade English teacher at Blanton elementary…I swear she had eyes in the back of her head, she saw everything!…I really looked up to her, and I feel that she had a true passion for teaching. I hope I have the same passion for whatever future lies ahead for me as well.”

Nelda Hinojosa (Reagan, attended Harris and Pearce; going to Texas A&M Corpus Christi; member of the Raider band for the last 4 years)

“Involving myself in the community has put knowledge in my life that not everyone has the same opportunities, and by giving a hand just to help little kids will make a difference….you can do so little and have such a big impact….”

Redie Mumbili (Reagan, attended Andrews and Pearce; going to Huston-Tillotson University)  

My teachers and mentors pushed me to be great every single day I came to school…  ’[I’m especially] thankful to have had my basketball coach during my high school journey, because without him, I don’t know that if I would have had a plan to go to college….”

The students were also accompanied by parents and school staff.  You might see these young people not only on our streets but working in the neighborhood (Home Depot, Whataburger, Jamba Juice, etc.).  It does indeed take a village, and we in Windsor Park should be very proud that we are a part of that village!  

Because the scholarship committee feels that this is such a win-win situation for us all, we want to encourage donations for next year’s awards.  We are hoping to raise $5,000 to offer five full scholarships in 2018-19.

You may send your donations to: WPNA Scholarship Fund, and mail them to the WPNA P.O. Box: 16183, Austin, TX, 78761; donate via our secure PayPal account or bring them to our next monthly meeting!