Kelsey McKenzie of Marcellus awarded $200 for studies at SMCPublished 9:25am Thursday, October 1, 2009
On Tuesday, Sept. 29, The Inspiration Scholarship Foundation awarded Kelsey McKenzie of Marcellus the first Brenda Mast Memorial Scholarship.
As the first recipient of what will be an annual scholarship, the foundation’s board of directors presented McKenzie with a pen inscribed with the foundation’s slogan, “Dare to Inspire,” and a check for $200.
The Brenda Mast Memorial Scholarship is given out each year by the foundation in honor of former North Wayne Mennonite Church Sunday school teacher Brenda Mast, who passed away in 1995 after a long battle with leukemia.
The scholarship is designed to honor a graduating high school senior who exhibits some of the same qualities in his or her life that Brenda exhibited during her life, including academic success, community involvement and church involvement.
Each applicant was required to submit an application, letter of recommendation and an essay analyzing how a quote from Mother Teresa about volunteering applied to his or her life.
McKenzie, a recent graduate from Howardsville Christian School, detailed in her essay her dedication to serving others not only in her local community but in the global community as well.
She has been a member of Encore Dance Company in Dowagiac for 14 years and has danced at numerous community charity events, including Relay for Life, as a member of Encore.
She has also gone on several mission trips with her youth group to Mexico to volunteer at orphanages.
Even with volunteering, participating in dance, numerous sports and 4-H, McKenzie still managed to maintain a nearly straight- A average in high school while taking time to help other students in her class.
She was described by her Spanish teacher as “selfless” and a “blessing” to others.
McKenzie attends Southwestern Michigan College, where she plans on obtaining her associate degree, then transferring to Michigan State University to possibly pursue a bachelor’s degree in either veterinary science or agriculture.
More information about The Inspiration Scholarship Foundation and the Brenda Mast Memorial Scholarship can be found at http://daretoinspire.org or e-mail questions to the foundation’s board of directors at email@example.com.