News: OSC presents scholarships to deserving students
Story by Lance Cpl. James Smith
IWAKUNI, Japan - Students from Matthew C. Perry High School and station residents gathered at building 1200 for the Officers’ Spouses’ Club Scholarship Night here, May 16, 2013.
“We’ve been doing this scholarship night for as long as the history of the OSC has existed here, so more than 30 years,” said Jaime Yasumatsu, OSC president. “This year, we had 15 residents apply for the scholarship.”
Among the 15 who applied, three students won the scholarship: Zack Lewis and Josiah Ricafrente, M. C. Perry High School seniors, and Hailey Desselle, Robert M. Casey Medical and Dental Clinic registered nurse.
“I was honored to be one of the three selected for the scholarship,” said Lewis. “This scholarship will go a long way toward paying for my time at the U.S. Air Force Academy.”
According to Deanna O’Neal, OSC philanthropy chair, the scholarship requirements include being a graduating high school senior or a dependent spouse who plans to attend college or is currently enrolled at a college. Applicants also had to submit an essay, their current transcript and an information form.
Each of the recipients received $2,000, with money raised earlier in the year.
“The biggest fundraiser that we did was Wilson’s Auction,” said Yasumatsu. “We put on a huge furniture and Asian antique auction and that is where we make a majority of the money for our scholarship fund. We do other fundraisers throughout the year as well, with all proceeds going toward the scholarship fund.”
Once the students received the scholarship, each took a moment to stand before their peers and briefly share their plans.
Lewis said he intends to become a Russian linguist at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. Ricafrente’s plans are to study aerospace engineering at the University of California at Irvine. Desselle, who is currently enrolled at the Chamberlain College of Nursing, said she is determined to acquire her bachelor’s degree in the Science of Nursing.
“We are all just excited to see what they do with the money in the future,” said Yasumatsu. “If you think about the different avenues, we’re helping a nurse, a future Air Force officer and someone who is going to design airplanes. I’m just excited to hear stories about them from their parents about their education.”
With a total of $6,000 awarded to help further the education of three students, the OSC can now build funds toward the scholarship for next year's graduates.