Every year, the Manning Rotary Club gives out several scholarships to students at Laurence Manning Academy and Manning High School. This year, they gave out four $500 scholarships totaling $2,000.
The application process consists a survey of the prospective students community and school accomplishments, as well as their GPA, Class Rank, and five questions that serve as a short essay prompt. These five questions are:
What are your plans after you finish your high school education?
How has your high school education and other life events prepared you for college?
What improvements would you suggest for Clarendon County?
What are your career plans after college?
Do you exemplify the motto “Service Above Self?” If so why?
Several students responded in exemplary fashion, truly showing the rotary club all that they had to offer. However, in the end, only four would receive the scholarship.
Bryson Woodard is a graduate of Laurence Manning Academy, and a resident of Manning. He plans to attend Clemson University this fall, and plans to major in pre-med. His ambition is to one day become an emergency medicine or surgical/wound care doctor. A few of his volunteer activities over his high school career include serving with the LMA Anchor Club, LMA Red Cross Club, 4H Leadership and Citizenship Club, McLeod Health Clarendon Service Learning Program, Service Projects with the Soil and Water Conservation District, serving at the Clarendon Baptist Church, and many others.
While he spoke highly of Clarendon County in his essay, his improvements are centered in better road conditions and improved education. As for exemplifying the “Service Above Self” motto, Woodard believes his hard work is key.
“I have learned that nothing happens without hard work,” wrote Woodard. “I have also learned that leading is best done by setting the right example with your own actions.”
Taj Blair is a graduate of Manning High School and a resident of Summerton. He plans to attend Clemson University this fall, and plans to major in Architecture or Design. He also graduated as the Valedictorian of Manning High School. A few of his volunteer activities over his high school career include serving at the Manning Early Childhood Center, traveling to Mexico for a missions trip, Bi/Tri-monthly trash pick-up for Manning, and serving with the MHS Student Council for their Annual Fall Festival.
Blair’s ideas for improving Clarendon County included establishing community centers to provide youth with a safe space.
Blair believes that the key to “Service Above Self” lies in the service aspect.
“I have participated in various community service projects, but not for the sole purpose of it looking good on my college application,” wrote Blair. “I have always had the intention to engage in these services to to the public in order to help my local community.”
Alyssa Gottheiner is a graduate of Laurence Manning Academy, and a resident of Manning. She plans to attend Clemson University or University of Georgia this fall. Gottheiner also graduated as Valedictorian for LMA. A few of her volunteer activities over the course of her High School Career include serving at her church (where she has received multiple awards), serving with Clarendon County Hometown Heroes, the Anchor Club, and as a Special Education Horse-Side Walker.
While at LMA, she served as a horse-side walker for children and adults with special needs such as Autism, Down Syndrome, PTSD, and physical handicaps. Through this, she helped them ride horses to aid in their rehabilitation. Through this, she has decided to pursue a career in speech-language pathology after college.
Gottheiner’s ideas for ways to improve the county include gearing up citizens to volunteer more by providing more areas for service.
Gottheiner believes that her “Service Above Self” attitude was largely exemplified when she began her very own “Hometown Heroes” program, a day for the community to honor law enforcement.
“When I created Hometown Heroes, my purpose was to show the extraordinary acts of law enforcement and bring together my community for a fun-filled day,” wrote Gottheiner. “These events brought together a diverse group of individuals from my community, and I was overjoyed.”
Riley Floyd is a graduate of Manning High School, and a resident of Manning. She plans to attend Charleston Southern University this fall, where she will major in Public Health. A few of her volunteer activities throughout her high school career include serving at her church’s nursery, and bible school.
Floyd believes the biggest improvement Clarendon County could work on is racial seperation. She believes that the county needs to act “more like a family, and not just a community.”
As far as “Service Above Self” is concerned, Floyd leans on her faith.
“When I am not able to help somebody physically, I pray for them,” wrote Floyd. “While walking through the store or driving past an accident, I say a simple prayer for them.”
The four scholarships were given to the students and will go towards their college educations this fall.