MONTE VISTA— Alyssa Rawinski is this year’s annual Gerald Vigil Scholarship winner. The recent Monte Vista high school graduate shows great talent and plans to use the scholarship to attend Western Colorado University this fall.
There she will study wild life biology in the honors program. In high school Rawinski was involved in several extracurricular activities, including student council, marching band, volleyball, the National Honors Society, Key Club, science club and science fair. “Being involved in a lot of activities in high school allowed me to explore different career subjects. Science fair is the extracurricular that really captured my interest and inspired me to pursue science,” said Rawinski when asked how her high school activities prepared her for her career choice.
Rawinski has a keen interest in science and has done two years of research trying to see if meal worms can be used to decrease plastic waste. When asked what made her interested in pursuing this field she said, “Growing up I’ve always loved wildlife and the outdoors. Recently on a trip to D.C. I went to the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and I realized that the work they were doing with animal conservation was a job I could really picture myself doing.”
Rawinski learned about the scholarship through an email her counselor sent to her class. “I would like to thank the Vigil family for awarding me the scholarship. I’d like to thank my family and teachers for helping me with the application. I would also like to thank my counselor for notifying me of the available scholarship,” said Alyssa.
Children of the late Monte Vista broadcaster Gerald Vigil, Rebekah Altizer, Tim Vigil and Erin Burton started the scholarship in honor of their father. There are several requirements for a student to qualify for the $1,000 award. They must be a U.S. citizen, have a 3.0 GPA, and plan on enrolling full-time in either a two-year or four-year program.
“Education was always very important to our dad and we wanted to find a way to honor him while helping others. The scholarship is very important to us and we hope to continue helping students for a long time,” said Gerald’s children.
When asked what made Alyssa an ideal candidate Vigil’s children said, “Alyssa is an ideal candidate because she is smart and driven. She has a clear plan for her future and a college education will help her in achieving her goals. We wish her the best in her future endeavors!”
Help future students by donating to the Gerald Vigil Scholarship fund set up at the San Luis Valley Federal Bank.