Blankenship, the son of Charles and Anna Blankenship of Huntersville, plans to attend the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and study mechanical engineering. He started high school at North and moved to Hough when the school opened last year.
Brown, the son of Ronnie and Deleisha Webb Smith, will attend Saint Augustine's College in Raleigh starting this fall. Brown is not locked into a major course of study but is considering a focus on engineering.
Curtrara, the son of Randy and Rhonda Cutrara of Cornelius, plans to pursue a degree in film studies. He is still weighing his college options, but the University of North Carolina at Greensboro is his likely choice.
Blankenship, Brown and Cutrara are each eligible to receive up to $20,000 in Broad Prize assistance during their college years.
The three local students and others from schools throughout the CMS system were notified of their selection as scholarship winners during a surprise announcement at a block party held Monday for CMS employees. The scholarships from the Eli and Edith Broad Foundation were made possible due to the school system's selection as the 2011 recipient of the Broad Prize for Urban Education.
The Broad Prize, the largest award of its kind in the country, recognizes school districts for overall academic improvement in student achievement while simultaneously reducing achievement gaps among minority students. As the recipient of the top Broad honor, CMS was awarded $560,000 to distribute to deserving students.
In keeping with the prize's intent to encourage all students to achieve, the scholarships are awarded to graduating seniors who have improved academic performance in high school and have a financial need for college assistance.
Broad Prize scholars receive two- or four-year scholarships depending on the type of college they choose. Recipients who enroll in four-year institutions receive $20,000 paid out over four years. Students who enroll in two-year institutions receive $5,000 scholarships paid out over two years.
Lowe's gift aids Washam project
Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation has awarded a $30,000 grant to J.V. Washam Elementary School in Cornelius to help make the Hawk's Nest outdoor playground and learning area a reality.
The money will be used for a multi-phase endeavor to better utilize space on the school's Westmoreland Road campus and create more functional areas for physical and academic activities. This grant will be paired with a $45,000 grant from the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and additional community contributions to complete a playground area, walking track and learning area. The grant will also be used to purchase technology equipment to promote learning campus-wide.
"Lowe's is committed to recognizing and supporting efforts that enrich the lives of our neighbors and customers," Marshall Croom, chairman of Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation, said. "By supporting J.V. Washam Elementary School, we believe we are contributing to a cause that's important to our customers and employees and helping build a stronger foundation for the children who will be tomorrow's employees, homeowners and community leaders."
The grant was recommended by Mooresville-based Lowe's 12-member Hometown Grants Advisory Committee that includes representatives from education, recreation and business in the Lake Norman area. The advisory committee reviews applications and recommends grants for final funding decisions. The Foundation has earmarked $300,000 in annual contributions for Lake Norman area community improvement and public school projects.
DeOre an NCSU ROTC scholar
A high school senior from Huntersville has been awarded a four-year ROTC scholarship to attend North Carolina State University in Raleigh. Alan DeOre, a member of the Pine Lake Preparatory School class of 2012, has been selected as a recipient of a 2012-13 National Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps scholarship to attend NCSU.
DeOre, the son of Jeffrey and Mary DeOre of Huntersville, will begin studies at NCSU this fall as a member of the Class of 2016. He plans to major in mechanical engineering with a minor in naval science.
DeOre will undergo Naval ROTC orientation training in Virginia Beach, Va. in early August prior to the start of the school year at NCSU.
The Naval ROTC scholarship is a four-year award that will cover DeOre's university training. When he completes studies for his college degree, DeOre will also receive a commission in the United States Navy.