Ridge High seniors Laila Boyd and Nick Stoto will each receive the 2020 Ridge Alumni Memorial Scholarship (Ridge AMS), two $20,000 awards that recognize character and determination. They are the organization’s largest scholarships in its 14 year history, and a unique double grant inspired by 2020’s uniquely challenging environment.
“Our 2020 candidates were exceptional. Laila’s and Nick’s applications so moved our Board that every member contributed in order to fund this unprecedented double grant,” according to Jane Cullinan, a founding Trustee and member of the Ridge AMS selection committee. “COVID-19’s economic impact has hit our funds hard, as it has many Americans’. I’m proud of our Board members’ generosity in personally responding to support two exceptional students.”
When notified about the Ridge AMS award, Laila said, “I jumped up and ran to tell my mom the news. (This award) encouraged me to work hard for everyone who believed in me and most importantly, for my mom. For some people $20k may not seem like much, but for us it is life changing!”
Nick reported this reaction: “I immediately ran upstairs to tell my parents who were sleeping, as it was midnight. I was absolutely ecstatic and so were my parents so we jumped for joy in a dark bedroom until my dad’s sleep apnea machine almost fell off.”
The Ridge AMS grant is unusual in recognizing applicants’ non-traditional achievements, rather than grades or test scores. Winners may use the award for any personal growth opportunity.
Organizers donate all expenses associated with Ridge AMS. This allows all contributions to go directly to student awards. Ridge AMS contributions are tax-deductible. For more information on the Ridge Alumni Memorial Scholarship, visit the scholarship’s website: RidgeAMS.org