By ARNOLD A. AUGUSTE
For the past 17 years, the Church of the Nativity, an Anglican church in the Malvern area of Scarborough, has awarded scholarships to young people in the community who will be attending college or university. So far, 93 such scholarships have been awarded, with financial support from the church members.
This year, of course, was no different.
During the service last Sunday morning, two young men and five young women were on hand to accept the $1,000 cheques. An eight recipient was unable to attend.
The scholarships are in keeping with the church’s mission “to reach out to the community and to provide spiritual and moral support.”
“Our main focus in awarding (these) scholarships is to assist students with their post-secondary education and to invest in our youth and the future of the community,” says a statement from the church’s incumbent priest, Rev. Pam Prideaux and Scholarship Chair, Vida Clarke Stevens.
“We hope these scholarships will aid them in their pursuit of academic excellence, preparation for their careers and service to their church, community and society as a whole.”
“Many people say that our children are the future of the church, but here at the Church of the Nativity, we believe they are a vital part of our present,” said Rev. Prideaux. “We are pleased to be able to offer not just spiritual support, but practical support as our young people enter college and university.
“Our members enjoy seeing them prosper and grow as they transition into adulthood, and higher education is a huge part of that.”
“I commend the Church of the Nativity for its foresight in providing annual scholarships to deserving students entering college and university, thus assisting them in the pursuit of their academic desires,” veteran educator, scientist and member of the Church of the Nativity, Dr. Jide Koleoso, said in a statement. “It is hoped that this will encourage other young people to aspire to greater heights.
This year’s scholarship recipients are Cheyenne Bonnick, Shaneka Brissett, Julian Flatts-Robinson, Fayeann James, Olivia Gibson, Kimya Cato Hypolite, Nathan Graham and Michelle Munawa (who was absent).
Bonnick is a graduate of All Saints Catholic School, where she was actively involved in the choir and music program. She will be attending Wilfred Laurier University to study music therapy in the Bachelor of Arts program.
Brissett, who excelled in Math at her old school, Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute, and has been complemented on her leadership skills, will enter Ryerson University to study Business and Finance.
Flatts-Robinson attended Blessed Mother Theresa Catholic Secondary School where he was the captain of the football team. He will enter Centennial College to study Construction Management.
James is a graduate of Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute where she was a member of the Black Students Association. She will attend George Brown College of Applied Arts and Technology to study Early Childhood Education.
Gibson, another graduate of Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute, was also a member of the Black Students Association at Pearson. She will study Obstetrics at Centennial College.
Cato Hypolite attended Agincourt Collegiate where she excelled in music, both vocal and instrumental. She will be attending Humber College to study Jazz. She is a member of the Caribbean Dance Theatre and the Unionville Soccer Club.
Graham, referred to as an excellent language student, is a graduate of Lester B. Pearson Collegiate Institute where he scored 94 per cent in his Grade 12 Core French. He will continue his studies in French at Glendon College, York University.
Following the presentations, some 50 gift bags, including knapsacks and school supplies, were presented to students returning to school.
During the service, Rev. Prideaux (or Rev. Pam as everyone calls her), spoke on the subject of love and urged members of the congregation to show that love to each other, not only in words but in their deeds. The scholarships and gifts to the students show that the membership of this church has already got that message.