For more than 25 years, Columbia Association (CA) has been recognizing high school seniors for outstanding service to their community. This year, the Maggie J. Brown Spirit of Columbia Scholarship Award, a $2,500 scholarship, was awarded to six high school seniors who have shown extraordinary dedication to performing community service.
Alexandra Berges, from Marriotts Ridge High School, is a member of the Student Government Association and the National Honor Society. Berges combined her passion for reading with her love of children to create a new project in collaboration with the Howard County Board of Education. This project was a summer program for students who speak English as a second language to help them with reading while school was out. Berges will be attending Johns Hopkins University in the fall.
Faith Hahn, from Long Reach High School, has an interest in the health care profession that led her to discover that a nearby Alzheimer’s Disease clinic was short on volunteers. Hahn organized a group of friends who joined her in volunteering at the facility. They played games with the patients, engaged them in conversation and helped the staff with whatever was needed. Their efforts were truly appreciated. Hahn will be attending the University of Pennsylvania in the fall.
David Lazris, from Wilde Lake High School, has been in many leadership roles throughout his high school career. As a competitive swimmer, lifeguard and swim team coach, Lazris wanted to make swim lessons accessible to all children. In his role as administrator for “Columbia Swims,” he helped obtain grant funding from USA Swimming. This program teaches water safety and swim lessons to residents. Lazris will be attending Brown University in the fall.
Sean Salisbury, from River Hill High School, has served on his student government’s executive board for the past four years in many capacities and has been its treasurer this year. In addition, Salisbury took a leadership role as chairman for a student government committee that was responsible for hosting the 6th annual River Hill community-wide yard sale. This event provides school groups and organizations with a way to raise money either for operating expenses for their clubs, or to donate to charity. Salisbury will be attending the University of Southern California in the fall.
Kristina Titus, from River Hill High School, has always had a passion for helping others. It is because of this passion that Titus created a literacy reading program at Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center in Columbia. Titus made activity packets for the children and met with them every Sunday to help them complete their packets, and also to read to them. She also volunteers her time at Grassroots every month, buying food and preparing breakfast and serving it to more than 40 residents. Titus will be attending the University of North Carolina Wilmington in the fall.
Anasia Wharton, from Hammond High School, has been a member of the Howard County NAACP Youth Council throughout her high school career and is currently serving as the youth council’s president. Through this organization, Wharton has participated in numerous activities and events sponsored or co-sponsored by the youth council. She has created a new project, as well as taken leadership roles in other projects. Wharton will be attending Xavier University of Louisiana in the fall.
Columbia Association was created to nurture Jim Rouse’s vision and to represent the city’s residents. CA strives to enhance the quality of life for people living and working in Columbia, to respect the land, to foster the growth of individuals and to ensure that the community remains open, integrated and caring. CA offers many recreational, cultural and community services.