ST. LOUIS, October 8, 2011 — On Saturday, October 1st, the Robert A. Stehlin Campaign for ALS (RASCALS) Foundation presented scholarship awards during its recent fall fundraising event to Jamie Bolden of Barnhart, and Leah Winer from University City.
The RASCALS Higher Education Scholarship Program was created this year to provide assistance to ALS patients or their family members in pursuit of higher education. The scholarships may be used for any scholastic-related need, such as tuition expenses, schoolbooks, and other learning materials.
The inaugural awards were presented for the 2011-2012 academic year in the amounts of $3,500 each. Each applicant submitted a 1000-word essay on the theme: “How ALS Has Influenced You.”
In addition to the essays, the RASCALS Board of Directors determined the recipients on the basis of various criteria, including scholastic achievements, school activities, awards, and community projects.
Following her graduation from Washington University in 2009, Ms. Winer chose to remain close to home to care for her father, Brian Winer, who lost his battle with ALS in August of 2010. The deeply personal encounter with the disease motivated her to volunteer at the Washington University School of Medicine research lab studying ALS beginning in 2008.
From 2009-2011, she continued her service as a full-time research technician. Ms. Winer has since continued with her education, and is currently enrolled at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia to become a physician.
Her co-winner, Ms. Bolden, is a 2011 graduate of Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Missouri. Her mother, Serena Bolden, is a survivor of ALS. As a result of the experience with her mother’s fight, Ms. Bolden developed an intense desire to help others in need.
Working with the group, World Changers, she had the opportunity to help a family in Spain, which has a young daughter suffering from ALS. She says it was a commitment that she will treasure for the rest of her life. Ms. Bolden is currently studying at Free Will Baptist Bible College in Nashville, Tennessee.
The scholarship awards were made possible by the RASCALS Foundation, along with a special matching gift from Walgreen’s. “RASCALS is extremely grateful to the leadership at Walgreen’s for their participation in this scholarship project. Their generosity will definitely help to change lives in our ALS community,” said Robert Stehlin, founder and president of the 501(c)(3) non-profit, public charity.
Mr. Stehlin, who was diagnosed in September 2009 with ALS, said the disease impacts the entire family. “While there are all sorts of challenges, it is extremely important that families remain positive and forward-looking,” he explained, “and that’s the intended spirit of these scholarships.”
For more information, contact Robert Stehlin at 636-464-6704 or Greg Reagan, RASCALS Treasurer, at 314-960-3629.
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