At the May 17th meeting of the Rotary Club of Hickory, Rotarian Thomas Griffis announced the winner of the 2018 Service Above Self scholarship. Kristina Nicole Stuckey is this year’s recipient of the four year college scholarship.
Rotary Club of Hickory recognizes the value of a good education. Since 2005, thirty-four students have received SAS scholarships, totaling over $234,000. SAS recipients have attended Appalachian State University, Davidson College, Duke University, East Carolina University, Furman University, Gardner Webb University, Lenoir Rhyne University, University of Alabama, University of North Carolina, University of South Carolina, and Catawba Valley Community College, among others.
As the Service Above Self scholarship winner from Hickory High School’s class of 2018, Stuckey will receive Rotary’s financial aid toward her college tuition. Due to the continued financial success and popularity of Rotarian Idol, the SAS scholarship was increased in 2015 from $10,000 to $12,000. The increase allows the SAS scholarship recipient to receive $3,000 per year for college costs. The total scholarship is now $12,000, payable over four years.
Rotary Club of Hickory’s Service Above Self scholarship rewards students who excel in the classroom, are recognized by teachers as leaders and who volunteer to serve others through community service, church activities and more.
To qualify for a Service Above Self scholarship, candidates must consistently demonstrate their service to others, be in the top 20 percent of their class and lead by example. During the candidate’s interviews, students are evaluated on traditional scholarship standards: grades, overall grade point average and class rank. What sets the SAS scholarship apart from many others is that each honored student must demonstrate how they serve their community.
The daughter of Annamarie and Scott Stuckey, Kristina is ranked first in the Class of 2018 at Hickory High School. In addition to her academic accomplishments, she embodies our Rotary motto, Service Above Self, in and beyond HHS. At school, her activities included serving as Recycling Project manager, participating in Carolina Cycle Challenge, and providing dog supplies for the Catawba County animal shelter. These activities were carried out by the Interact Club in which she served as Co-Vice President during her junior year and Co-President in her senior year. She was also active in the Beta Club, the Science National Honors Society, the National Honors Society, and the Latin Club.
Beyond HHS, Kristina displayed her servant’s heart by teaching dance at the Ann Freeman Dance Academy, teaching kindergarteners religion and moral principles at St. Aloysius Church, and raising funds to provide dance scholarships through Carolina Dance Masters.
The Hickory High School Interact Club, sponsored by our Rotary Club of Hickory, provided Kristina opportunity to hone her leadership skills. She learned how to work collaboratively, to listen to others, to take notes on input from peers, and to react appropriately to different leadership skills. She feels this experience will enable her to be a more effective follower and leader as she moves into her college years at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
As a Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholar, Kristina has had opportunities to visit and study at several colleges and universities, including Boston University, Haverford College, and Brown University. This experience provided an opportunity for her to learn different perspectives in art and science. Her travels to and study in different settings, along with the International Baccalaureate program at HHS, have helped her develop something of an international approach to knowledge. An HHS course in “Theory of Knowledge” heightened her awareness that there are different ways of understanding and communicating what is known. Asked what her advice to fellow students might be, she replied: “Get the facts!” Kristina plans to become a pediatrician with a focus in developmental health
Scholarship funding is made possible by the Rotary Club of Hickory’s successful fundraising activities, including the annual Rotarian Idol competition. The Rotary Club of Hickory’s ongoing commitment of financial support continues to provide necessary educational assistance locally, and is consistent with the club’s continued commitment to and financial support of local educational initiatives.
The Rotary Club of Hickory was founded in 1921 by Watt Shuford. In adherence to Rotary’s motto of “Service Above Self,” the club has a history of giving back to the community through its primary service avenue of education.