Breeanna Rothenburg, a resident of Cato and senior at Cato-Meridian High School, is the January recipient of Keuka College’s George H. Ball Community Achievement Award.
She joins Dakota Skinner, Bethany Derleth, Victoria Anderson, and Taylor McIntyre as recipients of the $68,000 scholarship ($17,000 annually), which recognizes strong academic and community service records. The College will award one more scholarship for 2013-14.
The award honors Rev. Dr. George Harvey Ball, founder and first president of Keuka College.
Rothenburg was nominated for the award by Sally Lebro, family and consumer science teacher at Cato-Meridian.
“I can’t imagine anyone who is more deserving of this award than Breeanna,” said Lebro. “She is No. 1 at helping anyone at anytime, regardless of what their needs are, and does this totally without regard for her own wants and needs.”
Rothenburg works with elementary students in after-school programs and is a peer tutor. In addition, she serves as a volunteer teaching assistant who“has earned great respect from the students she assists,” said Lebro. “She helped orchestrate a benefit for a patient with health problems and volunteers to help our local PTO whenever it needs assistance.”
She has helped organize numerous events at school and “spent countless hours cleaning and reorganizing the classrooms of teachers who need her help,” said Lebro.
Rothenburg assists senior citizens at the grocery store; shovels snow for people who can’t do it themselves; participated in the 5K Run for Respect race, a fundraiser for Special Olympics; and helped run a local kiddie carnival.
“She is a self-starter and doesn’t wait to be asked before pitching in,” said Lebro. “She just does it, and then sticks with it until everything is taken care of.”
Skinner was nominated by Steven Gillule, a guidance counselor at Tioga Central.
“Community service has always been an integral part of my life,” said Skinner. “I continue to be active in programs and organizations that have a focus of helping individuals improve their quality of life.”
At school, he has been involved in numerous organizations, including SADD, the band, student council, and National Honor Society while engaging in a host of service activities such as American Red Cross blood drives and roadside clean-ups, among others.
The consummate student-athlete, Skinner has played varsity baseball since his freshman year and captained the varsity basketball team as a junior. He also serves as videographer for the football team.
Skinner donates his time and talents to numerous youth programs offered by his church, including vacation Bible school and Children’s Chat. He is also involved with various creative ministries, such as assisting with the choreography of hand puppet shows at nursing and retirement homes and singing Christmas carols for shut-ins.
His commitment to social responsibility is also evidenced by his work with Operation Christmas Child, participation in food drives for the local pantry, and assisting coaches at youth baseball clinics.
Derleth, a resident of Rochester and senior at Greece Athena High School, was nominated for the award by Sarah Culp, associate pastor of the Greece Baptist Church.
“Bethany is involved in many aspects of community service, both within and outside the church,” said Culp, who is responsible for youth programming. “Always ready to lend a hand, Bethany is especially good with children, often assisting with their classes and volunteering in the nursery Sunday morning.”
Derleth spends many of her vacations and school breaks in service of others. Since seventh grade, she has spent spring break at Flower City Work Camp, helping low income homeowners with needed repairs. She also traveled to New Orleans, La., to assist with Hurricane Katrina relief efforts in the Lower Ninth Ward.
She also donated her time and talents in Washington, D.C., planting trees, clearing a walkway, and cleaning up litter in an urban park, as well performing various tasks to prepare for the opening of a new school.
“Over the summer months, Bethany can be found at Cameron Community Ministries, assisting children with reading and math as well as helping out in the clothing closet and soup kitchen,” said Culp.
Anderson, a resident of Glenville and student in the Hudson Valley Educational Consortium, was nominated for the award by Helen Hagen, director/principal of Hudson Valley Educational Consortium, “a collaborative effort among SUNY Orange, Ulster, Rockland, and Sullivan community colleges to create broader access to academic programs and workforce training throughout the four-county region.”
“Victoria is a one-in-a-million, shining-light person,” said Hagen. “She brings her optimistic, enthusiastic, diligent, respectful charm to all she does. The trait I find most astounding in Victoria is her bone-deep kindness and empathy.”
Here are just a few examples of how Anderson has made a difference in her school, community, and world:
“Victoria is making the world a better place one day at a time,” said Hagen. “She has the skills and determination to make big things happen.”
McIntyre, a resident of Trumansburg and senior at Watkins Glen High School, was nominated for the award by Tammy Lotocky, an instructor in the criminal justice program at The Greater Southern Tier (GST) BOCES.
“Taylor has helped her community and made a difference to the people around her,” said Lotocky. “This consistent willingness to go above and beyond best describes her.”
For more information on the George H. Ball Community Achievement Award, or to nominate a high school senior, go to: http://www.keuka.edu/community/