The Moebius Syndrome Foundation awards three (3) educational scholarships of $2,000 each, to individuals who have Moebius syndrome and will be attending an undergraduate college/university/ post-secondary vocational school. The 2018 scholarships have already been awarded. Look out for an announcement for the 2019 application in early 2019!
Congratulations to the Recipients of the 2018 Moebius Educational Scholarship!
Michael Gonzalez of Bridgeview, IL, is a freshman at Northern Illinois University majoring in Rehabilitation Services/Rehabilitation Counseling. Michael is an Eagle Scout, is a member of the NIU Huskie Marching Band, and volunteers through the Boy Scouts of America, Feeding my Starving Children. He works part-time at Coldstone Creamery, is a member of the National Honor Society and is a car enthusiast. Per Michael’s essay, ‘I want to be able to help people get through their obstacles in life, just like the doctors and nurses did for me. I want to be there for other people. They said I couldn’t, so I did.’
Audrey Kellar of Proctor, MN, will attend Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, majoring in Astrophysics. She is on her high school A Honor Roll, received the Presidential Award for Academic Excellence, is the Treasurer for her high school National Honors Society and received an English Academic Achievement Award. She volunteers at Kids Zone at the Lake Superior Ice Festival, and her hobbies are singing, reading and painting. Audrey had surgery every 6 to 8 months until she was 12 years old due to scoliosis and knows that having Moebius syndrome and scoliosis has done nothing to hinder her brain. She is in the top 20% of her class and ‘is learning to love her Moebius while realizing it’s something she doesn’t need to dwell on.’
Audrene Raynor of Pompano Beach, FL, will attend Broward College in Coconut Creek, FL, majoring in Social Work. She is on the A Honor Roll, volunteered for her school garden cleanup, waterway clean up, Women in Distress Walkathon and school/community clean up. Her hobbies include writing poems & stories, singing, dancing and volunteering. Audrene states: ‘I am motivated, determined and meant for greatness. I turned pain into my motivation, turned negative taking into my determination, and now I want to turn myself towards others and help them.’
Zamani Green of Norfolk, NE, will attend Northeast Community College in Norfolk, NE, majoring in Behavioral Science/Psychology. His goal is to be a therapist for veterans or children at Shriners Hospitals. He is a Peer Leader of Sources of Strength, was student of the month, helps prepare veteran graves for the American Legion prior to Memorial Day, and prepares and serves food at the Salvation Army. Zamani works at Hugo’s Grocery Store and the Veteran’s Concession Stand for the Sons of the American Legion. His hobbies are boxing and playing Xbox where he enjoys meeting players from all over the world. Zamani started a program at his high school to bring students together during lunch time who usually always ate alone. According to Zamani: ‘Some say that my life has been unfair, unforgiving and ruthless, but I respond that these challenges and opportunities have made me a stronger person.’
Congratulations to the Recipients of the 2017 Moebius Educational Scholarship!
Brianna Kelley of Lawrenceville, GA, will attend the University of Iowa where she will pursue her doctorate in Communication Sciences and Disorders. Brianna is a member of Phi Kappa Phi, Golden Key International Honor Society, Sigma Alpha Lambda, and Phi Theta Kappa. She tutors at risk students in math and science, speaks to students about having a disability, and is a member of the Student Technology Fee Advisory Committee. In her essay, Brianna says, ‘I have never let Moebius syndrome or doctors define who I am and what I can accomplish. I had cochlear implant surgery and my goal is to improve speech production and quality of life for all individuals living with hearing impairment.’
Mike Gonzalez of Bridgeview, IL, will attend Northern Illinois University majoring in Rehabilitation Services. Mike worked hard to attain the rank of Eagle Scout and is an Argo Ambassador helping students with special needs in his high school. He is in the marching and jazz bands, on the varsity bowling and tennis teams, and is a member of National Honor Society. Mike states in his essay, ‘Growing up, I had to have many surgeries on my feet to be able to walk. . . to fix my clubbed feet. I never let my ‘disability’ take the best of me and always fought through to earn what I deserved. I want to be able to help people get through their obstacles in life just like those doctors and nurses did for me. I want to be there for other people.’
Dominque Piotrowski of Fairport Harbor, OH, will attend Lake Erie College where she will major in Equine Therapy. She is on her high school honor roll, merit roll, was named Student of the Year, and mentors children with disabilities at her church’s Camp Koinonia in the horse riding program. She has gone through 10 procedures to improve her quality of life and is an advocate for the Many Faces of Moebius. Dominque volunteers for the Cancer Relay for Life in honor of family members. In her essay Dominque states, ‘Constant bullying at school and teachers telling me I could not accomplish the goals I set, kids teasing me and defending others with disabilities made me stronger. After getting my Bachelor’s in Equine I will continue my education in youth ministry and will own and operate a horse ranch/camp using riding skill sets to improve people from all walks of life.’