Congratulations to our 2017 scholarship recipients!
The Oregon Head Start Association is proud to announce our scholarship recipients for 2017. There were roughly 17 applicants for every scholarship we awarded. The applicants had amazing stories that made selecting the winners difficult for the committee. We commend all of our applicants for sharing their stories and pursuing higher education!
Richard C Alexander Early Head Start Parent Scholarship
Every year OHSA awards a $2,000 scholarship to a parent of a child enrolled in Early Head Start. This award is named in honor of Richard C. (Dick) Alexander, business leader and entrepreneur. Dick Alexander had a deep commitment to focusing resources where they can make the greatest difference: early childhood. He was the architect of the Ready for School campaign which leveraged the power of business and civic leaders to secure an additional $39 million in state funding for Oregon Head Start Pre-kindergarten’s most vulnerable children. In 2010, his advocacy resulted in the Oregon Legislature allocating a million dollars to the Department of Education to establish a state-funded EHS program. This placed Oregon as a front runner in developing a state and federally funded system for early childhood services, prenatal to age 5. We are happy to announce Kaela Patterson from Mt Hood Community College Head Start as the 2017 recipient of the Richard C Alexander Early Head Start Parent Scholarship.
Frank Roberts Memorial Scholarships
In addition to an illustrious teaching career, Frank Roberts served over 25 years as a member of the Oregon State Legislature, retiring in August 1993. Senator Roberts is remembered for his skilled service as a leader of the Education and Human Resources Subcommittees and was a leader in establishing state funding for the Oregon Head Start Pre-Kindergarten Program. His dedication to children and families, commitment to the disabled, advocacy for early childhood education and Head Start, and his unwavering commitment to education at every level made him a hero for thousands of Oregonians.
We remember Senator Roberts memory by annually awarding two $2,000 scholarships in his honor. The Frank Roberts Memorial Scholarship for Graduating High School Seniors is being awarded to Adrianna Vaca-Navarro of Hood River. The scholarship for Head Start parent is being awarded to Sarah Mortensen of Neighborhood House Head Start.
Ken Lyday Memorial Staff Scholarship
Kenneth Lyday was a long-time Head Start teacher and a member of the Oregon, Region X, and National Head Start Association boards. He began teaching at Mt Hood Community College Head Start in 1992 and continued there until his passing in 2016. Ken’s passion for Head Start was apparent to everyone who met him.
We are honored to continue Ken’s legacy by awarding a $2,000 scholarship annually. We are happy to announce Danielle Everson from Mt Hood Community College Head Start as the first recipient of the Ken Lyday Memorial Staff Scholarship.
Congratulations to the 2017 OHSA scholarship recipients!
It is my pleasure to speak about the experiences I have had with Southern Oregon Head Start (SOHS). Over the last four years my children have been involved at SOHS, involvement has included classes and educational resources for my children, as well as ample opportunities for myself, not only to be involved in the educational development of my children, but also furthering myself through self-improvement and community involvement. During my time with SOHS I was humbled to be the recipient of a scholarship through Early Head Start for the sum of $2,000. Not only did this scholarship help me pay for my classes, it was granted at a time that enabled me to graduate with my Bachelors of Biomedical Sciences on time. Currently I am a graduate student at John’s Hopkins University studying Biotechnology. I have also been accepted to medical school at St. George’s University and will begin my journey to becoming a physician in the West Indies, Grenada, August 2016.
The services and resources provided by SOHS not only have helped me to fulfil my dream of practicing medicine, they have also been cornerstone to my children’s success in public school. My daughter, who is currently in first grade, is a top reader in her class. She is one of five students involved in a reading group that is assigned more difficult readings, in addition to group reading sessions that entail readings from books more advanced that the rest of the class. I directly correlate her success with reading to the support she received at SOHS, as well as the encouragement that I received as well. My son, who was attending speech therapy, quickly graduated the speech program after his first year of Early Head Start. Again, I attribute his rapid success to the support of his teachers and class staff, as well as the frequent and useful communication I received from them during this time.
During my time at SOHS I was also involved in the SOHS Policy Council as well as parent meetings, and have spent many hours volunteering for class activities and the like. The allowance of being directly involved with my child’s education, has enabled me to have an “inside” view to my child’s strengths and weaknesses, in terms of attending public school next year.
The benefits provided to the community, including my family, on behalf of SOHS have had a profound effect on not only child development, encouragement and love, but have also retained the same encouragement through adulthood. It is my hope that the SOHS program will grow, and continue to have the impact on the lives of others the way it did for my family and I.
My Sincerest Thanks,
2014 Richard C Alexander Scholarship Recipient
I’m currently in my 5th semester of college. My journey has been slow but steady as I have had to balance full-time mom and household duties, and part-time work with Neighborhood House Head Start. My husband’s career as a naturopathic doctor has taken us to University Place, WA; we’re a few steps closer to our dream of a family medical practice in which he can focus on the business of healing people, while I focus on the business of running a business. 🙂 Now I just have to continue in school with our goal in mind and graduate with a degree is business administration/management.
I have now completed ten years of working for Child & Family Development Programs. I have continued in the position of center manager for the program. I completed my Master’s Degree from Capella University in December 2013. I graduated with honors and a 4.0 cumulative GPA. The Frank Roberts Scholarship supported me in achieving this goal.
When I look back at my goals and aspirations submitted when applying for the scholarship, I feel that I am continuing to successfully progress on my goals. I have used information gained from my education on new research and what is current in the field to better support the staff I supervise. In particular I have gained new insights to share with them in how to approach observation and assessment in the class room, which further impacts the ability to plan for classroom activities with more focused intent.
A second goal was to increase my opportunities to train and coach other early childhood professionals. In March of 2014 I started to teach for Portland Community College as adjunct faculty for the early childhood education and family studies department. I received feedback from students they enjoyed my enthusiasm and my passion for the field was very evident. I look forward to teaching more classes and being able to use what knowledge I have gained through my own education and experiences to help support other professionals in the field. One unexpected benefit from completing my degree is I understand the challenges faced by my adult students who are working to gain new knowledge and skills in the profession, often while juggling education with work and family. Furthermore, as part of the adult education community I am connecting with other early childhood professionals that share my passion for promoting best practices in the field. I am proud to be part of a program aligned with the National Association for the Education of Young Children program outcomes for ECE professionals, and I look forward to teaching more classes in the future.