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Seniors in Class of 2023 awarded $116,000 in scholarships




For 54 seniors at Pittsburg High School, their goal of earning a college degree has been made a bit easier: they were awarded a total of $116,000 in scholarships on Sunday, April 16, 2023, at the Pitzer Family Scholarship Event organized by the USD 250 Foundation.


Held at PHS, the event brought together numerous donors from the community and the students and their families so that the names behind the scholarships became more meaningful and personal. 


Some donors gave scholarships in their own names, others gave memorial scholarships as a tribute to family members, and still others gave scholarships established in the name of a school class or a business. The Foundation gave academic scholarships as well as a Night of Dragons scholarship funded by an annual social event and silent auction.


“The most heartwarming aspect of the foundation scholarships is that they are funded by alumni of Pittsburg schools who want to give back and by generous members of our community,” said Dawn McNay, Foundation board member and emcee for the event. “It shows our graduates that we believe in them and their future.”


McNay noted that those receiving scholarships are very deserving: they have contributed hundreds of hours of combined volunteer service hours to the community; are among the top in their class with regards to grade point average and ACT scores; have been active in numerous athletic and academic extracurriculars; and many of them also have held part-time jobs throughout high school.


Since the Foundation's inception, it has awarded more than $400,000 in college scholarships for graduating Dragons, and thousands more to teachers for unique and innovative classroom projects.





Scholarship recipients included:

Olivia Tune: a Night of Dragons scholarship (4-year renewable). Olivia will major in psychology at PSU.


Cassia Allison: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship. Cassia will major in chemistry at the University of Kansas.


Anjali Gupta: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship. Anjali will major in biochemistry with a minor in public health at PSU.


Daniel Riachi: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship. Daniel will major in engineering at KU.


Ella Rhuems: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship and the Derek Brumbaugh Memorial Scholarship. Ella will major in political science and minor in psychology and plans to pursue a medical degree.


Jason Tarbox: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship. Jason will major in behavioral neuroscience at KU.


Samantha Winzer: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Samantha will major in actuarial sciences at PSU.


Greely Arck: a USD 250 Foundation Gold Medallion Scholarship and the Megan Mallatt Memorial Leadership Scholarship. Greely will major in English education at the University of Arkansas.


Emma Barnhisel: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Dave Turnbull Athletic Scholarship (4-year renewable), and the Student Publications Leadership Scholarship. Emma will major in business at PSU.


Max Battaglia: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Jake Fincher Art Scholarship. Max will major in music education at PSU.


Eve Bertoncino: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Eve will major in business administration with an emphasis in non-profit management at KU.


Tate Campbell: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Derek Brumbaugh Memorial Scholarship, the Susan Laushman Vocal Music Scholarship, and the Greg Shaw Memorial Scholarship. Tate will major in music education with a minor in piano performance at PSU.


Ellie Carpenter: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Megan Mallatt Memorial Scholarship, and the Student Publications Leadership Award. Ellie will major in biology with a pre-med emphasis at PSU.


Lauren Coomes: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Lauren will major in theater with a minor in business at Kansas State University.


Elli DeGruson: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Babs and Susie Tims Scholarship, and the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Elli will major in elementary education at PSU.


Skylar Ebbs: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Skylar will major in biology with an emphasis in pre-med at PSU.


Keller Erwin: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Dragon Mentor Scholarship. Keller will major in elementary education with a minor in music at PSU.


Daphne Samayoa: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Daphne will major in criminal justice with a minor in psychology at Missouri Southern State University.


Garrett Hanson: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Garrett will major in aviation at Hesston College.


Adam Harris: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Adam will major in music education at PSU.


Ashleigh Henderson: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Marilyn Noble Memorial Education Scholarship. Ashleigh will major in forensic science at Wichita State University.


Athennah Jones: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Greg Shaw Memorial Scholarship, and the Student Publications Leadership Scholarship. Athennah will major in Environmental Health and Safety at Missouri Southern State University.


Shannon LaValla: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Friends of PHS Performing Arts Technical Scholarship. Shannon will major in technical theatre with a certificate in stage management at WSU.


Emily Reams: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship and the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Emily will major in graphic design and minor in marketing at the University of Arkansas.


Jack Stefanoni: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship, the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship, and the Fine Arts Summer Scholarship. Jack will major in music education at PSU.


Adora Udokpan: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Adora will pursue a degree in medical science / pre-med.


Madeline Wiske: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Madeline will major in psychology at KU.


Henry Phillip: a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Technical Scholarship. Henry will major in technology engineering education at PSU.


Cooper Short: the Class of 1943 Scholarship. Cooper will major in exercise science and sports medicine at Labette Community College.


Natalie Ruiz: the Class of 1943 Scholarship, the Joan E. and Steve Lewis Memorial Scholarship, and the Student Publications Leadership Scholarship. Natalie will major in elementary education at PSU.


Alaycia Harris: the Class of 1956 Scholarship, the Ken Bishop Memorial Scholarship, and the Brandon Leroy Smith Memorial Leadership Award. Alaycia will major in graphic communication at PSU.


Keara Muthoni Emery: the Class of 1967 Scholarship. Keara will major in medical sciences / radiography at PSU.

Lydia Davis: the Class of 1968 Scholarship. Lydia will major in accounting and finance at PSU.


Johan Arriola: the Class of 1974 Scholarship and the Wayne B. Yarcho Memorial Track Scholarship. Johan will major in automotive technology at PSU.


Haven Bolte: the Class of 1974 Scholarship and the McQuade Family Scholarship. Haven will major in nursing at Labette Community College.


Dawson Stegman: the Collinson Family Scholarship, the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship, and the Student Publications Leadership Scholarship. Dawson will major in marketing and graphic design at PSU.


Cruz Lopez: the Roy Davis (4-year renewable) Scholarship. Cruz will major in exercise science at PSU.


Riley Proffitt: the Dick Webb Dragon Mentor Scholarship. Riley will major in social work at Labette Community College.


Carter Mekkaoui: the Elliott Family Scholarship. Carter will major in technology at Labette Community College.


Olivia Doodnauth: the Lorraine E. Galvani Scholarship and the Friends of PHS Performing Arts Performance Scholarship. Olivia will major in communication and theater at PSU.


Dasa Flores: the Lorraine E. Galvani Scholarship. Dasa will major in history and government education at KU.


Corbyn McIntyre: the Fred J. Galvani Scholarship. Corbyn will attend NEO Community College.


Kevin Mejia: the Fred J. Galvani Scholarship and the Kaleb Konek Memorial Soccer Scholarship. Kevin will major in construction management at PSU.


JJ White: the Fred J. Galvani Scholarship. JJ will major in agricultural science at Fort Hays State University.


Jackson Turnbull: the Coach Bill Hanson Memorial Scholarship. Jackson will major in biology at Fort Hays State University.


Abriel Schmidt: the Kaleb Konek Memorial Soccer Scholarship. Abriel will major in Health Sciences at PSU.


Ryan Bresee: the McQuade Family Scholarship. Ryan will major in HVAC at Fort Scott Community College.


Jackson McKechnie: the Altricia Misse Memorial Scholarship. Jackson will major in business management and finance at Emporia State University.


Alexis Shidler: the Pepsi Cola of Pittsburg Scholarship. Alexis will major in nursing or biology at KU.


Alexyia Lunday: the Pepsi Cola of Pittsburg Scholarship. Alexyia will major in law at the University of Illinois.


Ethan Rhodes: the Brandon Leroy Smith Memorial Scholarship. Ethan will major in sports management at Missouri Valley College.


Jasmine Delgado: the Timmons Scholarship. Jasmine will major in business management at PSU.


Kelsey Lee: the Dick Webb Memorial Scholarship. Kelsey will major in finance at PSU.


In addition, Josiah Fletcher (Oct. 5, 2004 -March 2, 2023) was recognized as having been the intended recipient of a USD 250 Foundation Medallion Scholarship. Josiah was planning to major in music at PSU at the time of his death.


About the Foundation:

The Foundation was founded in 2000 by a group of community members and the school board to promote educational opportunities for all students through enhancement of facilities, services, and programs, and to provide post-secondary scholarships for deserving students. 


In addition to scholarships and teacher grants, the foundation has helped complete the renovation at Hutchinson Field, replace the PHS gymnasium floor, and with the addition of the Megan Mallat Activity Center at PHS.


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