The Marlboro Milton Lions Club hosted a special dinner at the Ship Lantern Inn to award two scholarships to two graduating seniors, Rhiannon Tierney and Sophia Pesano. Each will receive $2,000 in two installments, over this coming year.
Tierney, presently Vice President of the school’s National Honor Society, is a member of UNICO and plays on the High School Varsity Lacrosse team. She heard about different scholarships in school and filled out an application for the Lions Club.
“I saw that this one was mostly about your community service and what you do in your community and I decided to apply for it,” she said. “We had to write an essay about what we do in our school and in our community and submit three recommendation letters from people that we’ve worked for, one [school] staff member and two people from the community.”
Tierney said she was surprised to win because of the number of students who had applied this year.
“I didn’t think I had a good chance of getting it so I was surprised when I got it,” she said. “We got a letter in the mail two or three weeks ago.”
Every Sunday Tierney serves as a children’s teacher at Valley Christian Church in Hopewell Junction and also goes on mission trips in the summer to different areas. She has traveled to Boston, Philadelphia, Washington D.C. and Vermont.
“Some years we work outside clearing out places so they can plant gardens and trees to help make the city nicer. We work with young kids who have been neglected or have hard times at home. We work with them for the weeks or in nursing homes in different places,” she said.
Sophia Pesano wrote about her community service.
“The major one being as a lecture in my Church. I know I’m the youngest lecture and a lot of people come up to me and say it is good to have someone so young involved in the ministry because you don’t see that a lot in our Church.” Pesano attends St. Mary’s Church in Marlboro.
Pesano also volunteers at Newburgh’s Knights of Columbus pancake breakfast and dinner fundraisers.
In school, Pesano is the secretary for the National Honor Society and the National Spanish Honor Society. She has been a Stage Manager and Treasurer for the Drama Club for all four years. In addition, she was a member of the Varsity Cross County team and is currently on the Golf team.
Pesano gave a special thank you to the Marlboro-Milton Lions Club, “for acknowledging me and Rhiannon. I know they spend a lot of time emphasizing community service and that is also something very important to me. I also want to thank my parents for instilling this sense of community service in me from a very young age and for always supporting me in my decisions.” Tierney also thanked the Lions Club and her parents; “They support me in all that I want to do, so they have helped me with all my community service.”
Both young ladies are off to college in the fall. Tierney will be enrolling in a pre-medical program at Pennsylvania State University, studying Neurology and Bio-behavioral Science. Pesano will be attending SUNY Stony Brook University, majoring in Biology and following a pre-med track, with an eye toward becoming an Anesthesiologist.
Ralph Walters is the club’s treasurer and chairman of the scholarship committee. He enjoys being a member of the club and, “doing stuff for the community. Why was I involved with the ambulance corps for forty years, because it was something that was good and beneficial for the community.”
Lions Club President Stephen Jennison said they have been awarding scholarships to Marlboro High School graduating seniors for about 30 years.
“We’re looking for kids that volunteer in the community, not just because they’re in the Honor Society, but something out of the ordinary. We’re looking for those Eagle Scouts and for Girl Scouts, and for those who are really involved in their community. It is not by grade point average but we want that all around good student.”
The Lions Club hosts different fundraising events during the year; coming up next is a Golf outing on May 20 at Apple Greens and a senior citizen picnic is scheduled for the morning of August 8 at the town park.
Jennison enjoys the fact that the Lions Club is a non-political organization.
“We don’t allow political talk at our functions; if it is you have to pay a fine,” he said. “We try to have a good time and we have a good group of businessmen and women who come together.”
Jennison said if anyone is interested in joining the club they can reach him at 845-489-8350. They also can be found on Facebook at the Marlboro Milton Lions Club.