Ashburn, Virginia—Ashby Ponds announced the 12-member Student Scholars Class of 2018 during its Annual Award Ceremony on May 21. The employees, all members of the Dining Services Department, earned four-year collegiate scholarships in the amount of $5,000.
More than $109,500 was raised during the 2018 campaign, funded primarily through resident contributions, according to Elisabeth Longworth, Philanthropy Manager for the Erickson Living retirement community. In combination with the classes from the previous three years, the community is supporting 49 collegiate scholarships this fall.
"The Class of 2018 set a high bar for future recipients," stated Ms. Longworth. "They attend seven different high schools in Loudoun and Fairfax Counties and will enroll in a wide variety of colleges in Virginia and the mid-Atlantic. They were enthusiastic about the scholarship process and demonstrated their appreciation for the heartfelt generosity of the residents they serve."
Ms. Longworth notes that "our goal is to increase the amount of the awarded scholarships in the next five years. Engaged students like these, contributing to our strong sense of community, definitely inspire us to reach this worthwhile goal."
A resident-comprised Philanthropy Committee provided valuable guidance and support during the fundraising campaign that ran from March 1-April 6. The highlight of the effort was a variety show held on April 27 that showcased the talents of this year's scholars. In front of a full audience in the community's Great Oaks Performing Arts Theater, the students sang, danced, recited poetry and played musical instruments.
Lyn Lubic serves as the Chair of the Philanthropy Committee. A resident of Ashby Ponds for nearly four years, she also was the community's Director of Sales. "The residents recognize the value of the scholarship program as a way to make a positive difference in the future of these wonderful young adults," she said. "The students make us a smile and become like our 'surrogate grandchildren.' In turn, we're able to provide them mentorship and even assistance in their studies and programs such as English as second language. It's a win-win for everyone."
To be eligible for a scholarship, dining services students must work 1,000+ hours in their junior and senior years, submit an application and essay, receive recommendations from a manager and an outside source (non-family member or non-affiliation with Ashby Ponds) and participate in a community event such as the variety show.
For more information about the scholarship program, as well as learning about other benefits of employment with Ashby Ponds such as tuition reimbursement, please call 703-723-1999 or visit https://jobs.ericksonliving.com.