The Robert J. Elmes Jr. Memorial Scholarship is awarded every semester to two Buffalo State students: one a member of CSEA Local 640, the other a dependent of a member. The scholarship was established by the late Robert J. Elmes Sr., professor emeritus of communication, and Nancy Elmes in memory of their son, Bobby Elmes. He was working as a motor equipment mechanic for Buffalo State when he died tragically in 1994 at the age of 33.
The purpose of the scholarship is to assist CSEA members and their dependents financially in their quest for a college education.
The winners of the fall 2012 Robert J. Elmes Jr. Memorial Scholarship were Courtney Jakubek, the dependent recipient, and Kathrine Harrington, the member recipient.
Harrington holds a Secretary 1 position in the Speech-Language Pathology Department. “I have a 20-month-old daughter,” said Harrington, “so most of my money goes toward her. Thanks to the scholarship, which covered activity fees, I was able to take a course that I wouldn’t have been able to take otherwise.”
Harrington took an anthropology course, Understanding Culture, as part of her Intellectual Foundations requirement. She earned a grade of A-plus, which will improve her already impressive 3.83 GPA. She is pursuing a business administration degree with a concentration in management by taking one course a semester, including J-term and the summer. She expects to graduate in two years.
“I want to show my daughter that you can definitely do anything you set your mind to,” said Harrington, who holds a second job on the weekends.
The scholarship of $250 is awarded for one semester; recipients are encouraged to reapply. To qualify, a scholarship recipient must be either a member of any bargaining unit of CSEA Local 640 or a dependent of such a member, and be enrolled in at least 3 credit hours of either graduate or undergraduate coursework during the semester of the award. Interested candidates must complete an application that includes an essay explaining how winning the scholarship would benefit the candidate’s pursuit of higher education.
The scholarship will live on in perpetuity, according to Dale Swain, maintenance supervisor with Campus Services and vice president of CSEA Local 640. “We have made sure that even though the executive board of CSEA Local 640 or the committee members may change, the scholarship and the scholarship committee will continue to be a standing committee,” said Swain.
Solicitations for candidates for the spring 2013 scholarship will be sent to CSEA members in mid-January.
Pictured (clockwise from top): Kathrine Harrington; Harrington's daughter, Celenia Morales; Harrington's fiancée, Jared Morales