The club at its weekly luncheon presented two Class of 2014 graduates with a new scholarship. Available this year due to successful fundraisers, Club President Kim Loesing said the scholarships of $2,000 each were presented to Erin Missroon and Miguel Tuberquia.
The scholarship was named the Canton Rotary Principal Debra Murdock Scholarship in honor of Cherokee High School’s principal, who was named the 2014 Georgia High School Principal of the Year.
Missroon plans to study English and psychology at LaGrange College. Tuberquia, who was his class’s salutatorian and drum major, will study biology and music at the University of Georgia.
“These are two of the most amazing students I’ve ever known — and I’ve known a lot,” Murdock said, noting Missroon has “so much potential,” and that Tuberquia “believes better than anyone.”
The club also honored its winners for the annual Laws of Life essay contest. A ninth-grade winner and a 12th-grade winner is selected every year from entries submitted by Cherokee High School students. This year’s winners were Evan Tomicki, who recently completed the ninth grade, and Class of 2014 graduate Ansley Key.
The Georgia Rotary District’s Character Education Program sponsors the statewide contest each year. More than 41,500 students from across the state participated in this year’s contest, which named 154 school-level winners and seven state winners and distributed $19,000 in cash awards to students and teachers.
Tomicki attended the club’s meeting and read his essay, which shared how his cross-country coach’s motto of “The Only Place Success Comes Before Work is in the Dictionary” has made a positive impact on his life.
Key’s essay, “Strangers are Friends Waiting to Happen,” is about how a friendship with a Special Education student changed her life.
The Laws of Life program and the new scholarship program both were coordinated by Rotarian Dr. Susan Padgett-Harrison, a Kennesaw State University instructor and former CCSD administrator and Cherokee HS Principal.
The essay contest for many years has been coordinated at the school-level by Cherokee HS teacher Dr. Susan Buice, who retired at the end of this school year, which prompted the club to present her with a plaque in appreciation for her dedication to the contest.
“This awards program is a highlight for our Rotarians each year. We always come away amazed by the wisdom of young people and an appreciation for those who teach writing to them,” Padgett-Harrison said.