Name: Marianne Rendon, senior at Bard College Senior and Kerry Davis, junior at North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Accomplishment: Both women were awarded the Hazen-Fairbank Scholarship from Huguenot Memorial Church in Pelham Manor.
Key to Awesomeness:
The cost of a four-year college education often leaves students shouldering hundreds of thousands of loan debt long after they’ve thrown up their celebratory cap. But for two lucky young ladies, Marianne Rendon and Kerry Davis, the economic burden for textbooks and tuition recently became a bit lighter.
On June 15, Rendon and Davis were awarded the Hazen Fairbank Presbyterian Women’s Scholarship at Huguenot Memorial Church’s annual Presbyterian Women’s Dinner. Hazen Fairbank was a pillar at Huguenot and a proponent of women’s education and mission work.
“Hazen’s legacy of educating women and fostering a commitment to mission work at home and abroad is continued by the women that annually receive this scholarship,” stated Julia Coss, treasurer of the Presbyterian Women of Huguenot.
To be considered for the $1,250 scholarship award, candidates—who completed at least one year of college—submitted an essay about the ways in which they have cultivated a mission oriented lifestyle that falls in line with Huguenot’s ideals.
“I was really excited when I found out about the scholarship honor,” Davis remarked. “A lot of time and hard work went into preparing the essay. I was really proud that they selected me based on that.”
For Rendon, the process of applying for the scholarship offered up some awards in and of itself.
“I’ve been trying for many years to get this award,” Rendon shared. “It’s about keeping an open mind, being persistent and not giving up. I also learned to be comfortable receiving something.”
Davis and Rendon both participated in Huguenot’s middle and high school youth group programs. They delivered food to homeless people as part of the “Midnight Run” program and volunteered at local soup kitchens.
“Community service is something I want to keep doing for the rest of my life,” Rendon remarked. “But being service oriented doesn’t have to be big. It can just be a friendly, smiling face to help someone in need on the street or being kind and patient to your waiter at the coffee shop.”
Davis agrees with Rendon’s view on community service.
“It feels good to do something for someone,” Rendon said. “It definitely makes me appreciate what I have and not take for granted all of the good things.”
Relying on their faith and service not only bolsters these women’s self-esteem, but also helps to alleviate the stress and peer pressure they face at school.
“My faith has helped me through the toughest times with being overwhelmed with work or school,” Davis explained. “It helps to know that I can through any obstacle in my way.”