At the May 6 Fort Morgan Lions Club meeting, which was held at The Block, over 50 people attended to celebrate the accomplishments of local students.
Students from Fort Morgan Middle School (FMMS) who earned Good Solid Citizen awards from the middle school faculty were invited to be recognized and included the following seventh and eighth graders: Yissell Hernandez-Campa, Andrew Vazquez, Cloey Gayosso, Isarael Garcia-Garcia, Natalia Donez, Alyssa Cosarca, Andres Dardon Rodriguez, Chayse Beechman, Jasmine Brindisi, Angelique Schrum, Ayden Planche, Oscar Meza Macias, Claire Dalrymple, Athena Ball, Tyler Paulson, Dominic Araujo-Woodward.
Teachers provided comments alongside their recommendations, commenting on things like students’ work ethic, kindness and great attitudes.
A comment about Garcia-Garcia read: “Israel never quits. No matter the situation, Israel will give it its all, fail and try again. He personifies the word ‘perseverance.’ ”
Another comment described Brindisi as an “amazing, kind, respectful student who has worked very hard this year to improve,” in addition to her being recognized as responsible and having integrity.
While the Good Solid Citizens awards are given by FMMS, the Lions like to honor recipients annually at their first meeting in May.
Also invited to the meeting were three Fort Morgan High School (FMHS) seniors who received scholarships from the Lions Foundation of Morgan County, which have been awarded annually for over 30 years.
Three out of eight applicants were selected by the Lions Foundation Board – comprised of members Vernon Tryon, Melissa Edson, Kristin Lindsey, Bill Kindel and Alec Creighton – to receive scholarship money.
The Class of 2022 recipients included Khadro Abdi, Kayra Camargo Gonzalez and Alexis Rivas.
Though winners were decided upon by the Lions Foundation Board, FM Lions Club President Kelly Murkins was allowed to sit in on and observe the decision-making process.
“I was very impressed with all three of these recipients because of their goals for education, and what they want to achieve and become at the age that they are at was just really incredible,” Murkins said.
All three scholarship recipients fit the condition of being a future Morgan Community College (MCC) student and were judged based upon their application, personal story / essay, transcript, financial need and life involvement.
Tryon, President of the Lions Foundation, explained that “life involvement” was chosen as criteria rather than “school involvement” because not every student is able to participate in after-school activities due to work or family responsibilities.
He also shared that the monetary gifts from the Lions Foundation Board were matched by three community sponsors – Dr. Daniel Boedeker, Danford Realty and Leprino Foods – as well as the MCC Foundation.
“One third of the money the students get are from local businesses, and then the Lions Foundation puts in one third… and then the MCC Foundation puts in one third of the scholarship, as well,” Tryon said. “It’s a nice way to have more impact with what we’re doing. (It) makes everybody’s money go a little further so that everybody gets more value to their contribution, and (it adds) more value for the student. ”