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Pelican Water Sustainability Scholarship: Fall 2017 Winner Announcement


This last semester we decided to switch things up for our bi-annual College Scholarship Contest. The impacts of water pollution and the effects of implementing systems of sustainability both shape our planet in highly visible ways.

Many of the world’s brightest students experience the world through visual social media channels and accessible online content: we reshaped our scholarship competition by asking students to submit a photo along with a caption answering the question: “What does water conservation mean to you?

We received many thought-provoking and breathtaking submissions. Join us in congratulating this semester’s three winners, who will all receive scholarship funds to aid them in their ongoing pursuit of higher education:

1st Place: Adam Rooney

We are proud to name Adam Rooney of Whitman College our 1st place contest winner. His compact caption managed to detail numerous positive aspects of water conservation in a poetic, catchy paragraph full of rhyme and assonance. In his words, “Fresh water conservation serves as the foundation of the human population.” His photo submission of bears fishing along a glistening river at sunrise reinforced the idea that water conservation has consequences for all of the planet’s creatures.

Adam Rooney Scholarship Submission

Adam Rooney recently graduated from Klamath Union High School, having maintained an astounding 4.0 GPA while being enrolled in challenging academic courses to prepare him for a career in international relations and journalism. While in high school he also enrolled in challenging courses at the Oregon Institute of Technology where he earned all A’s as well. As the 1st place winner, Adam will receive $1,500 to help him along his educational journey.

2nd Place: Alyssa Abano

Alyssa Abano of California Lutheran University earned a well-deserved 2nd place in our scholarship competition. Alyssa took a different approach with her entry, showcasing a barren, dried-up mountain range in her photo. The accompanying caption provided context, indicating that the area in the photo had once been a shimmering blue lake where Alyssa grew up. Her entry shows that we will experience other permanent changes in topography if we don’t work together to conserve water.

Alyssa Abano Scholarship Submission

Alyssa is currently a Pre-Med/Biology major at California Lutheran University where she maintains a 3.55 GPA while actively pursuing community service and extracurricular activities. Alyssa is a peer advisor at her university’s Peer Advisor Program, and she finds time at Habitat for Humanity in Ventura County. In a glowing recommendation letter, a former teacher highlighted Alyssa’s critical thinking skills, compassion, and her remarkable capacity for giving. Alyssa’s 2nd place prize earns her $1000 for her educational expenses.

3rd Place: Giselle Edwards

Giselle “Gigi” Edwards rounds out our winners, placing 3rd in our scholarship contest with her photo submission that spreads positivity and encouragement. Gigi’s caption affirms that small individual actions like taking shorter showers and cutting out animal products from your diet can have a meaningful global impact for our most precious resource. Her submission photo of a dazzling waterfall supports her inspiring message.

Giselle Edwards Scholarship Submission

Gigi is a Public Health and Cognitive Science double major at Johns Hopkins University where she has maintained a 3.7 GPA and placed on the Dean’s List while deftly balancing requirements for both majors. Gigi is the fundraising chair for the collegiate branch of UNICEF and is the Assistant Manager for Volunteer Recruitment for Thread, a nonprofit that mentors students from local Baltimore high schools. For her 3rd-place prize Gigi has earned $500 to go toward her educational costs in the upcoming semester.

Interested in applying for next semester’s College Scholarship Contest? We’re keeping the competition fresh by asking that students create and upload a 30-to-60 second video to Instagram that answers the question: “How are you doing your part to conserve water?” For full submission details visit the College Scholarship Contest page.

Congratulations again to our three deserving winners!

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