The Neil M. Thomson '57 Memorial Scholarship was recently awarded at St. John the Baptist School in Kenmore. The scholarship was established in 2018 by Thomson's family to honor their brother's memory. Alum Gail (Thomson) Zorn '51, Thomson's sister and her husband Don joined Principal Jenny Bainbridge at the ceremony to present the scholarship award to this year's recipient: 6th grader Liam MacDermott.
"Mr. Thomson's family wished to honor their brother by creating this scholarship," explains Michelle Salemi, Director of Advancement. "In speaking with the family, they firmly believe a St. John's Catholic education lays the foundation for future success by instilling a love of learning at a very young age. They witnessed it firsthand with their brother and desired to establish this award because of it." A $3,000 scholarship is awarded each year to a sixth grader with half of the funds being used in both 7th and 8th grades to defer tuition costs. Liam was selected this year for being a student with a strong work ethic who puts forth tremendous effort daily.
All sixth graders attending St. John's were invited to apply for the scholarship earlier this fall. Applicants are required to write an essay describing why his/her St. John's education is important to him/her and how it prepares them for high school and beyond. It's submitted, along with a faculty recommendation, to a scholarship review board who choose the recipient. "By reading all of the students' essays," Salemi explains, "the selection committee is able to hear from the candidates what Mr. Thomson's family already knew: A St. John's education is centered in faith, academic excellence, and commitment to integrity and hard work! Truly, we are grateful to the Thomson family for continuing this scholarship honoring Neil and thrilled for Liam's success!"