LAFCU awards $5,000 in scholarships to Laingsburg and Maple Valley high school seniors
Recipients select local charities to receive $500 donations
LANSING, MI (June 19, 2017) — LAFCU has awarded the 2017 Write to Educate $2,500 college scholarships to two high school seniors who will attend Lansing Community College (LCC) and Baker College’s Owosso campus in the fall.
Laingsburg High School senior Cassidy Ward, daughter of Al and Chris Ward, of Laingsburg, plans to pursue an associate degree at LCC that will prepare her to work in the medical field.
Maple Valley High School senior Elizabeth Rushford, daughter of Mark and Lisa Rushford, of Nashville, will attend Baker College to pursue an associate degree in automotive services technology and a bachelor’s in business administration.
As part of the scholarship program, Ward and Rushford each selected a charity to receive a $500 donation from LAFCU. Ward chose the Greater Lansing Food Bank, and Rushford chose The Salvation Army Owosso.
“Each of these young women are truly leaders not because they were placed in positions of authority, but because they used the positions to help others,” said Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing. “Cassidy and Elizabeth demonstrated the highly effective leadership skills of mentoring, sharing, teaching and giving.”
Write to Educate scholarship recipients were selected based on a one-page essay they submitted describing how they demonstrated leadership ability in and out of school and how they plan to grow as a leader in the future.
Ward served in many leadership roles during high school including student council president. In this capacity she helped to guide a very successful Coaches vs. Cancer fundraiser that collected more than $15,000 for the family of a Laingsburg graduate who lost his battle with cancer last year. Other notable leadership roles include training others as part of her job at Kohl’s, serving as yearbook editor and chief, spearheading a student group that is responsible for the senior class video, and volunteering with Special Olympics with her family.
At LCC, Ward is interested in the school’s Student Leadership Academy, and looking forward, she plans to continue leading through example.
“I am excited for college and all the opportunities to expand my leadership activities and skills,” said Ward. “I also plan to expand my role with Special Olympics, getting more involved in organizing, fundraising and possibly assist with coaching some of the activities.”
Rushford also undertook a variety of leadership roles at her high school including being elected secretary of the National Honor Society, joining Peer Assistance Leadership (PALs) and DECA where she ran a coffee shop each morning before school, serving as trumpet section leader in her band at school and camps, helping to resurrect and run the school’s Art Club, and assisting with children at her church each Sunday.
Rushford also intends to maximize her high school leadership experience in her future business endeavors.
“I plan to own my own automotive repair shop where I can help students gain experience so they can go on to bigger companies or start their own business,” said Rushford. “I also want to start a program for high school girls who are interested in mechanics or other male-dominated jobs.”
Applicants for the LAFCU Write to Educate scholarship must have been a senior in a high school within the LAFCU service territory, which includes the counties of Barry, Calhoun, Clinton, Eaton, Gratiot, Ingham, Ionia, Jackson, Livingston, Montcalm and Shiawassee. They must also be planning to attend LCC or Baker College’s Owosso campus.
Cassidy Ward, center, is heading to LCC fall 2017 with a LAFCU Write to Educate scholarship. She’s pictured with Dan McKean, LCC Foundation executive director, and Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing. They are at the Greater Lansing Food Bank, the charity that Ward chose to receive a Write to Educate $500 donation from LAFCU.
Joe Wald, Greater Lansing Food Bank executive director, ceremoniously receives LAFCU’s $500 charity donation from Cassidy Ward, Write to Educate winner, and Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing. Ward selected the Food Bank to receive a LAFCU charity donation that is part of the Write to Educate contest.
Cassidy Ward, second from left, accepts the LAFCU Write to Educate scholarship to attend LCC. She’s pictured with her parents, Chris and Al Ward, and Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing. They are at the Greater Lansing Food Bank, which Ward chose to receive a LAFCU charity donation that is part of the Write to Educate contest.
Elizabeth Rushford, second from right, is heading to Baker College’s Owosso campus fall 2017 with a LAFCU Write to Educate scholarship. She’s pictured with, from left, Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing; Morgan Brown, LAFCU St. Johns senior member service representative; and Alyssa Sliger, LAFCU marketing and communications specialist. They are at The Salvation Army Owosso. Rushford chose the organization’s food and nutrition programs to receive a LAFCU charity donation that is part of the Write to Educate contest.
Elizabeth Rushford, center, ceremoniously presents LAFCU’s $500 charity donation to Lt. Jonathan Tamayo, The Salvation Army Owosso corps officer, second from right, to help fund the organization’s food and nutrition programs. As a winner of the 2017 Write to Educate contest, Rushford was able to select the charity to receive a donation from LAFCU. Also pictured are, from left, Morgan Brown, LAFCU St. Johns senior member service representative; Alyssa Sliger, LAFCU marketing and communications specialist; and Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU senior vice president of marketing.
About LAFCU (MI)
Chartered in 1936, LAFCU is a not-for-profit financial cooperative open for membership to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Michigan and to businesses and other entities located in Michigan. The credit union serves more than 69,000 members and holds $938 million in assets. It was named a Best Credit Union to Work For in 2020. LAFCU offers a comprehensive range of financial products and services as well as an expanding complement of financial technology solutions. Members enjoy benefits such as low fees, low interest rates on loans, high yields on savings, discounts, knowledgeable employees and nationwide access to fee-free ATMs. A recipient of the national Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award for credit unions, LAFCU enriches the communities it serves by supporting many organizations and causes. To learn more about LAFCU, call 800.748.0228 or visit www.lafcu.com.