Announcing the 2020 Students of History Scholarship Winners


Selecting a scholarship winner is difficult every year.  This year was even more so. Each essay served as a tangible reminder of another student who, after working hard through years of schooling, would miss graduation, prom, senior awards, etc.

 One scholarship for a single student just didn't seem like enough.  

So, this year I'm proud to honor seven graduating seniors with scholarship awards.  Each of these students wrote a wonderful reflection on the most important lesson they learned from their social studies classes and also received a glowing recommendation from a teacher. 

Thank you to all the teachers who nominated students and to everyone who applied. I wish I could have awarded more of you. I wish all of you the best of luck and good health in the coming year. 

So, without further ado, here are the ...

2020 Students of History Scholarship Recipients 


Daniel Cummins, Jr. - $1,000 Scholarship Winner

"Although I may not be able to graduate with my peers this spring, I am thankful for the unity that the coronavirus has wrought among my classmates and myself. I feel as though the intersection between our transition to college and this pandemic has created an inflection point in the history of this generation, and we will move together into the future on common ground, giving us the ability to do great things. This fall, I am honored to be joining Juniata College's Class of 2024 as a Philosophy and International Business major with the college's Mock Trial Team, and I plan to continue my personal pursuit of history as far as I can take it."

Nominated by Teachers Christian Calder Leonard Romanski, History Teachers
Abington Heights High School, Clarks Summit, PA


Ayonna Johnson - $1,000 Scholarship Winner

 "The Bible reminds us that "the race is not given to the swift nor to the strong, but to the one who endures to the end"...the mantra I've learned to live by. I am very grateful to have the loving support of my family, classmates, church and entire community. The outpouring of love during this challenging time has most certainly put things in perspective for me. Due to this unprecedented time in my life and senior year, I've learned to be more flexible and to enjoy the simpler things in life. It's not how you start, but how you finish. The tenacity of the Class of 2020 will be the catalyst to push us forward and endure, regardless of the obstacle. I will be joining the Tennessee State University family in the Fall."

Nominated by Anthony Thompson, History Teacher
Florida A&M University Developmental Research School


Chantel Gillus - $500 Scholarship Winner

"I am from Weldon, North Carolina and am a graduating senior from Roanoke Valley Early College where I was also a dual student at Halifax Community College. I plan to graduate from Halifax Community College in August 2020, which was pushed back due to the pandemic.

Speaking of the pandemic, the closing of schools has saddened me because I will not be able to live out my final milestones as a high school student and senior alongside my friends. Although, I am very grateful that our school system orchestrated something close to a normal graduation. They decided to record us walking across the stage in which they will put all the videos together for a virtual graduation.

After graduating from both high school and the community college, I will be attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel-Hill in the Fall of 2020. I intend to major in English and minor in Political Science in hopes of becoming a lawyer."

Nominated by Timothy O'Shea, US History Teacher
Roanoke Valley Early College, Weldon, NC


Myka Serwatka - $500 Scholarship Winner

"I am from Houston, Texas and will be attending Texas A&M University in the fall. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted my life in so many ways regarding my free time, my social life, and even my academics. It has been hard knowing that I am unable to wear my prom dress, my cap and gown, or even my school uniform anymore. Although this time has allowed me to focus more on my academics and staying active, I have not been able to work and make money, nor will I work during the summer as summer camps and volunteer opportunities have either been postponed or cancelled. I am hopeful that this situation will get better and our lives will return to normal :)"

Nominated by Paul Viers, US History Teacher
M. B. Lamar High School, Houston TX


Garrett Stanley - $500 Scholarship Winner

"My plan for college is to attend Florida Gateway College to pursue a degree in electrical engineering. I know we are experiencing an unprecedented historical event right now, and I hope to see positive lessons for future generations to come. Thank you again for your time, your consideration and the award."

Nominated by David Walker, 
Keystone Heights Jr-Sr-High School, Civics Teacher


Rayika Vahabi - $500 Scholarship Winner

"I plan on attending Boston University in the fall, fingers crossed! Right now I have officially finished high school and will be graduating so soon! It’s a pretty exciting time and i can’t wait for what’s in store next!”

Nominated by Robert Carter, Geography Teacher
Odyssey Charter High School, Las Vegas, NV


Final $500 Scholarship Winner 

Our final winner has been selected but I'm still waiting for confirmation and their photo. They will be added here when it's finally confirmed! :) 

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