The Lackawaxen River Conservancy (TLRC) has awarded two scholarships in 2016. John Sloane of Wallenpaupack Area High School is TLRC’s high school scholarship winner, and Carmen Francesco of Prescott College in Prescott, Arizona is the winner of TLRC’s college scholarship. John received his award at Wallenpaupack Area High School’s Award Assembly on June 17 th . Carmen’s award was presented at a luncheon with members of the Conservancy on July 10.
John is looking forward to a career in architecture and engineering. He is planning to attend Penn State University where he looks forward to studying the principles of green architecture, engineering and construction. Growing up in Northeastern Pennsylvania has given John the opportunity to enjoy an active life in the beauty and wonder of nature. He has enjoyed hiking and kayaking. His experiences in the appreciation of his environment have also raised some concerns. He feels that hazardous runoff from fertilizers and other chemicals is a serious danger to our water, and he is also concerned about building practices and materials that are not protective of the environment. He is hoping that his education at Penn State in architectural engineering will give him the tools to develop systems, techniques and materials that will address these concerns and lead to the protection and preservation of our environment for the coming generations.
Carmen is entering her senior year at Prescott College. She has actively pursued her passion for the environment since entering college. Last summer Carmen was an intern in a rural area of India. She worked at a girls’ school where she helped the girls create a garden where they learned sustainable farming practices. She was also able to document some of the local stories regarding the extraction of local resources by outside industries that resulted in water contamination, soil erosion, and toxin exposure. This past year, Carmen attended school remotely while living in New York City where she worked in the Plaza of the United Nations for the United Methodist Women in the Office of Environmental Justice. This summer she is working in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on an urban farm. This AmeriCorps program provides healthy foods in urban areas where access to fresh vegetables is very limited. The vegetable farms are established on lots in the city, and organic farming practices are implemented. Carmen is entering her final year at Prescott, where she is pursuing a double major in Environmental and Social Justice and Secondary History Education. Although she is sad that her college years are drawing to a close, Carmen is looking forward to starting her career and gaining further expertise in the protection of the environment.
The Lackawaxen River Conservancy Scholarship is open to graduating seniors who are attending high school in the Lackawaxen Watershed, and who intend to pursue a career in environmental conservation. The eligible high schools are Honesdale H.S., Wallenpaupack Area H.S., Western Wayne H. S. and the Canaan Christian Academy. The scholarship is open as well to college students who have graduated from a high school in the Lackawaxen Watershed and are pursuing an environmental career.