The borough’s Ancient Order of Hibernians, an Irish-Catholic men’s fraternal organization, is extending a helping hand to 8th graders who are making a move to local Catholic high schools.
For the fourth year, the organization’s Division 3, covering a group of east Bronx communities, has given awards to 11 local graduates of Catholic elementary schools.
Each partial scholarship winner is continuing onto a Catholic high school and received $250 from the Hibernians’ Division 3 at graduation ceremonies from schools throughout Morris Park, Belmont, Pelham Bay and Throggs Neck in June.
“I am pleased that my brothers have once again agreed to invest our funds in the future of the Bronx, by honoring Irish-Catholic youngsters by reducing the cost of high school education,” said Division 3 president Dan Donovan.
The scholarship program was begun under past Division 3 president Bob Nolan, who is now the president of all the chapters of the Bronx County Ancient Order of Hibernians.
“I congratulate the men of Division 3 for continuing to fund the scholarship program which has awarded 30 students more than $10,000 over the past several years,” he said. “There is no greater use of Division resources than the scholarship program.”
Nolan said that the idea for the scholarships came from a discussion that he had with Monsignor Donald Dwyer, former pastor of Our Lady of Assumption Church in Pelham Bay.
Nolan had asked Dwyer how an organization like the Hibernians could help, and that the scholarship program developed out of that conversation, he said.
With the average Catholic high school yearly cost somewhere between $7,000 to $8,000, any bit of money, if it covers the books students buy, would be helpful, said Nolan.
The Hibernians Division 3 took some of the proceeds from its annual dinner dance last fall and its golf outing in June to award the scholarships, said Nolan.
The scholarships were awarded to Annieva Conlon, Our Lady of Assumption; Michael Crorkin, Villa Maria Academy; Margaret Sanchez, St. Francis Xavier; Michael Radice, St. Francis Xavier; Gabrielle Butler, St. Clare of Assisi; Aileen Crowe, St. Clare of Assisi; Jason Leavy, St. Theresa’s; Allesandra Lupo, St. Benedict’s; Jolie O’Brien, St. Frances de Chantal; Christopher Cedeno, St. Thomas Aquinas; and Edgar Aguirre, Santa Maria.
In addition, Division 3 teamed up with another local non-profit, Service Alliance for Youth (SAY), to give a total of $500 for an educational scholarship for Aaron Garcia, a student at Lehman High School.
They have also awarded Emma Walsh with the Michael Warren Memorial Scholarship as the MVP of the St. Raymond’s Gaelic Football Team. She received a $500 scholarship.
The following Division 3 members attended graduation ceremonies in June to distribute the awards: Bob Nolan, Dan Donovan, Roger Slattery, Joe McManus, Roger Fahey and Dave Kilkenny and to Dennis Gallagher for his program assistance. President Donovan thanked the school principals for their assistance in selecting the students who were honored.