Scholarship Alumni Stories
Scholarship Alumnus Christopher Love’s research at MIT may lead to the development of new technology to prevent forest fires.
Christopher Love graduated from Atlantic High School in Delray Beach in 2005 and received two scholarships from the Community Foundation – the Heather and Patrick Henry Scholarship and the Reuter Scholarship. He recently graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), with a degree in Chemical Engineering.
“When I started filling out my college applications, I knew that I had no money to go to college,” said Chris. “Instead, I had a dream." When MIT accepted Chris, he knew he had done everything he could to reach his dreams – but to attend MIT would take more. “The Community Foundation helped me attend MIT”, said Chris. “I knew there would be a lot of opportunities at MIT. In particular, I have learned how to tackle really challenging problems and to really work harder than I have ever worked. I’ve acquired different skills that will stay with me forever."
While a student at MIT, Chris has already made valuable scientific discoveries. He discovered the mechanism of the voltage difference between trees and soil, authored research publications and joined VolTree Power, a startup company, trying to use this technology to prevent forest fires. He’s also researched topics like trying to understand how we smell and drug delivery devices for anti-cancer drugs. He spent a summer in Italy working with the largest electric utility provider designing solar thermal/geothermal power plants.
“Right now, I’m passionate about energy,” said Chris. “I have realized that energy is a serious issue for the world. My goal is to try to provide sustainable energy to as many people as possible. My immediate goals are to continue to graduate school majoring in mechanical and chemical engineering.”
“Education is wonderful—I love learning. It is a gift that keeps on giving
for the rest of my life. It’s a permanent gift that the Community Foundation has given me.”
Katrina Morrison received the Loblolly Scholarship. During her freshman year of high school, Katrina joined Jensen Beach High School’s sailing team, became a member of Sea Scout Ship 801? and joined the ranks of those addicted to boats. As an active member of the Sea Scouts, Katrina carried out the responsibilities for both elected and assigned positions, including Bosun’s Mate of Administration and Bosun’s Mate of Programs. She has sailed in all types of weather.
As her love and knowledge of sailing grew, it became time to decide upon a career and college. She considered teaching, but soon realized her heart would not be in it for she had given her heart to the sea. With the help of the Loblolly Scholarship, Katrina decided to attend Maine Maritime Academy to study small vessel operations, which will qualify her to work on small vessels including tugs, yachts, traditional sailing vessels and other types of boats. In a field dominated by men, she hopes to excel in a career centered on her love of the water and prove that the term sailor applies to her, as well.
Within her immediate family, Katrina will be the first to graduate from college. Her academic ability is illustrated by her 3.9 GPA and class rank of 11, which she has achieved in mostly honors and AP level courses. Not only has she achieved academic success; she has also been active in many extracurricular activities. She served as head volunteer last summer for the Children’s Program at the Eliot Museum, is a member of the French Honor Society, the debate team (where she won third place in oral interpretation) and the Florida Future Educators of America Club.
The Loblolly Scholarship is awarded to worthy Martin County college-bound students. The Community Foundation congratulates Katrina and is proud to welcome her into the Foundation family of scholarship recipients.
Improving the environment through education is central to the graduate education of scholarship alumnus Lauren Molina.
Lauren Molina would not have been able to pursue her dream of attending graduate school at the University of Florida without the help of a $33,250 scholarship, which she received in May 2008. She is a student in the combined masters-Ph.D. program in agricultural education and communications.
“My ultimate goal is to become a university professor and develop programs for the extension service that focus on parent-child relationship development through activities that foster respect and love for the natural world.”
Lauren believes strongly that the extension service can help bring about change in the home that can reap benefits for the environment. “I want to inspire people to learn,” Lauren says. “I want them to have concern for themselves and their environment. I am positive now that things you learn as a child never leave you, no matter what life throws you…they shape who you become.”
Lauren received her scholarship from the James H. Davis Memorial Scholarship Fund at the Community Foundation. The scholarship was established to assist graduates pursuing a degree in agriculture or horticulture, environmental horticulture, turf grass, forestry or other agricultural science dealing with the production and management of plants. Since the scholarship was established in 1996, over $670,000 in scholarships has been awarded to 41students. Through his gift, and the student lives he has touched, James H. Davis will continue to lead a legacy of opportunity in agriculture for generations to come.
Brittany Llewellyn emigrated with her family from Jamaica only six years ago. Now she is attending Harvard University and studying journalism, made possible in part by the Julian and Eunice S. Cohen Scholarship awarded to her by the Community Foundation.
In Brittany’s application essay she said, “My four year odyssey through the hallways of my high school has taught me what it means to be a minority – what it means to look different, to sound different, and to bring a different culture and socialization to the table. It has also allowed me opportunities for which I continue to be grateful, including significant facilities as well as insignificant comforts."
Among her academic achievements at Wellington High School, was to write for and edit the school newspaper, the Wave, and to take a major role in leading it to win the Sun-Sentinel award for the best overall high school newspaper in Palm Beach County. During the two years she spent on the paper, Brittany went from staff writer to editor-in-chief at the age of 15, and introduced a high level of excellence to its publication.
After receiving her scholarship from the Community Foundation, Brittany said: “I would like to thank the members of the Community Foundation for the kindness and compassion they have extended to me. I hope one day to be in a position to extend such generous philanthropy to other dedicated, deserving students.”
Established in 1988, the Julian and Eunice S. Cohen Scholarship Fund provides awards to academically talented students from Palm Beach and Martin counties who also demonstrate financial need. To-date, over $250,000 has been awarded to 39 students. Julian Cohen, a past Chairman of the Community Foundation, would be proud of Brittany’s achievements.