Last June graduating seniors, Ashlee Archer, Samantha Lindauer and Samantha Wallace were awarded scholarships by the local chapter of P.E.O. Members recently checked in with them to see how they were doing at their respective colleges.
Ashlee Archer chose Yakima Valley Community College for two reasons: she liked the Nursing Program there, and she is able to live with her grandparents in Yakima. She finds this living situation ideal for her and is pleased that “every cent of my scholarship can be used for tuition and books.” She is enjoying college very much, but says that she misses “small-town life” in Vernonia. This quarter she is concentrating on her studies and getting acquainted with college life, and has not ventured into any extracurricular activities yet. She is finding that focusing on schoolwork is keeping her busy enough for now. Among her courses this quarter are Psychology and Biology, time-consuming but very stimulating and enjoyable. She’s very happy with college life.
Samantha Lindauer is attending Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls. She is also a Nursing major. Her goal is to get her Bachelor’s Degree and work in a hospital. She is unsure yet what unit of hospital work will be her choice, but she is very sure that she wants to use her nursing skills in a hospital setting. Away from her studies, Sam is busy running Cross Country, with conference championships coming up soon. “Running Cross Country is more challenging at the higher elevation here in Klamath Falls,” she says. This past week (October 28th) they had their first snow at that elevation (about 4,000 feet).
Samantha Wallace is studying Biochemistry at Oregon State University, and is finding the academic community very much to her liking. She is joining clubs that are related to her field, and she has signed up for four different organizations and societies. She will decide after this school year which ones might develop into permanent affiliations after graduation. She is living in a dorm and is adjusting to its very busy lifestyle.
In addition, P.E.O. is proud to announce that Jeana Gump of Vernonia is also a scholarship winner, not as a Freshman but as a returning student. She has been awarded a PCE (Program for Continuing Education) scholarship and is a Senior at Portland State University, planning to become a Special Education teacher. She will receive her Bachelor’s Degree this year, and plans to continue into the masters program at PSU.
Jeana has a very personal reason to choose Special Ed as a career. She is the mother of an 11-year-old daughter, Savannah, who was born with Down Syndrome, and she has also been diagnosed with Autism. The Gumps also have another daughter, Sadie, who is nine.
Jeana, in addition to being a student and a very busy Mom, works part time as an Instructional Aide at Vernonia Elementary School. Needless to say, she is a very energetic, highly-motivated student. She says, “I have only one class session a week on campus, and the rest my course work is online, which saves a lot of commuting time.” She doesn’t have much spare time but likes to run, and manages an average of 2 to 3 miles, 3 days a week, which is not only good exercise, but “it is my stress-reliever,” she says.
Congratulations to these great students. P.E.O. is very proud of you!