Herscher Scholarship Inspires Students with Renewed Motivation

Three high-achieving students — Kelsey Still ’13, Whitney Altizer ’14, and Paige Howard ’15 — have received the Grace Sutherland and George Schilling Herscher Scholarship for two consecutive academic years, 2011–12 and 2012–13, rewarding them with a sense of accomplishment and spurring them on to even greater heights.

“College is expensive, so it’s nice to have the support of alumnae who give back to their community; it benefits the college and the students here, which in turn has the ability to affect many lives in a positive way by inspiring others to give back,” said Still, a senior majoring in healthcare administration.

Still hopes to manage a long-term care facility after graduation. She has been highly active on campus as a peer mentor, a lead advocate for the Student Government Association, active on the softball and basketball teams, a member of numerous honor societies, and president of the Healthcare Executive Club.

Education is valuable to her and she will likely pursue a master’s degree in the future. When she learned she was a recipient of the Grace Sutherland and George Schilling Herscher Scholarship, she was pleasantly surprised and grateful for the assistance.

Altizer, a junior on track to graduate one semester early with a degree in psychology, chairs the President’s Society, which happens to be her favorite organization on campus. She has also served on the Judicial Board, a welcome committee for incoming freshmen, and the Phonathon.  After college, she would like to work in human resources. Industrious isn’t an adjective  but an existence for Altizer, as she spends free time working a part-time job whenever possible. The scholarship inspired her with deep gratitude.

“The financial impact of college can be devastating at times, and scholarships offer students amazing benefits, even beyond the monetary — they motivate students to want to grow more, accomplish more,” Altizer said.

Like Altizer, Howard is ahead of the curve as a sophomore with junior status. She is double majoring in film production and psychology/sociology. With a ravenous appetite for knowledge, Howard is also pursuing minors in both French and women’s studies. In her free time, which is sparse at best, she enjoys community service and is a member of Circle K International. With 20 credit hours this semester, she is concentrating on academics. Beyond college, she dreams of directing humanitarian documentaries. Howard was filled with excitement when she learned she had received the scholarship and called her mother immediately to share the good news.  “I work hard in school and hold a part-time job during breaks to spare my parents as much financial strain as possible,” she said.

With profound appreciation, Howard summed up the sentiments of all three recipients.

“I would just like to say thank you to Mr. and Mrs. Hitchman and other donors,” she said, “I want them to know their contribution was not in vain and that I am taking advantage of every educational opportunity I can — I don’t take it for granted.”

Margaret “Peggy” Herscher Hitchman ’40 established the Grace Sutherland and George Schilling Herscher Scholarship to honor her parents. Students must demonstrate financial need to be considered.

Hitchman and her Husband Bill formed the scholarship as soon as they had the financial means to do so. She attended college during the depths of the Great Depression and wanted to recognize her parents for their sacrifices in ensuring she received a college education. “It was especially difficult at that time to have a youngster in school,” Hitchman said, “I could never repay my parents for what they did for me, but I knew I could help other young women pursue an education.”