NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarship
Since 1993 NRPA has awarded scholarships to seniors graduating from high schools in the Narrow River Watershed as part of its Youth Environmental Education Program.
In 2007, the scholarship was renamed the NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarship in honor of a former NRPA Board member who passed away in 2006. Lesa Meng served on the Board for six years and was chair of the Narrow River Road Race committee during that time. Her husband, Rick Moffitt, and friends provided additional funding for the scholarship, enabling NRPA to increase the scholarship awards to $1,000 beginning in 2008. Mr. Moffitt continues making donations to support the scholarship fund, and we would more than welcome contributions from others to the fund.
The scholarship applications are judged on:
- The student’s environmentally oriented activities in and out of high school
- The quality of an original essay that answers this prompt: "Choose one environmental problem/issue relevant to the Narrow River and discuss what you as an individual could do to mitigate the problem"
- Science teacher's recommendation
- Academic achievement in math and science courses.
You can download the 2017 application here. Applications for the scholarship are also available from the Guidance Department at each of the high schools in the watershed: Narragansett, North Kingstown, Prout, and South Kingstown.
2016 Scholarships Honor Three Enthusiastic Friends of the Environment
Congratulations to our 2016 NRPA Lesa Meng
College Scholarship winners:
South Kingstown High School
Hayley has been a very active Girl Scout for 11 years, during which she participated in many environmental activities. She was also a volunteer at the Norman Bird Sanctuary where she assisted with the local Harvest Fair.
Hayley will be attending the University of Rhode Island in the fall and plans to major in Medical Laboratory Science with a minor in (you guessed it) Environmental Science.
The Prout School
Tyler, shown here sporting a 2016 Narrow River Road Race T-shirt, has spent many volunteers hours with Save The Bay and NOAA caring for the New England Coast, but is now headed for the Left Coast to study ecology and environmental science at UC Santa Cruz.
Tyler was a member of the Recycling Club at Prout since his freshman year, where he started the school’s composting program. Tyler was a four-year member of the Cross Country team and the Captain of the Varsity Sailing Team.
North Kingstown High School
As with her fellow honorees, Tracy has demonstrated a commitment to caring for the environment. For her senior project she worked with Rhode Island Resource Recovery to improve the recycling program at North Kingstown High School. She also volunteered for several Clean Ocean Access Beach clean-ups and attended meetings for the N.K. Conservation Committee. Tracy was also a member of the Girls Track and Field Team.
This fall she will attend Lafayette College and plans to major in Electrical Engineering with the hopes of exploring alternative energy sources when she graduates.
2015 NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarships
Congratulations to this year's NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarship recipients:
Jacob Baretta, a graduate of South Kingstown High School, will be attending the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. He plans to study Oceanography/Marine Biology. He is a member of the National Honor Society and the Italian Honor Society. Jacob has been a volunteer for Save the Bay, a varsity baseball player on the SKHS team, and a volunteer and mentor for the South Kingstown Little League.
Erin Chille, a graduate of North Kingstown High School, will study Wildlife Conservation and Biology at the University of Rhode Island. Erin was a member of the R.I. Envirothon Team and President of the NKHS Science and Math Investigative Learning Experience (SMILE) team. She is a Girl Scout lifetime member and a Gold Award recipient.
Jack Hall, a graduate of Narragansett High School, will study journalism at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. For the past three years, Jack has been a river monitor at Middlebridge for the NRPA River Watch program. He has also been an active participant in the Narragansett Chapter of the Future Farmers of America.
Dean Kareemo graduated from North Kingstown High School where he was a National Honor Society member, a member of the NKHS Symphonic Band and a guitar player for his own blues band. Dean will attend the University of Rhode Island and major in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Molecular Biology. Dean is a volunteer for Clean Ocean Access, participating in many beach clean-ups.
Graduation Season in the Watershed 2014
NRPA Awards Four $1,000 Scholarships
Congratulations to the 2014 NRPA Lesa Meng Scholarship winners: Shannon Emrich and Kyle Sayre of North Kingstown High School, Omar Zaki from South Kingstown High School and Gennifer Keller from Narragansett High School.
Here are some photos from award nights and graduations at the three schools:
Shannon Emrich and Kyle Sayre with NRPA Board member Lynn Wolslegel who presented the awards at North Kingstown High School.
Shannon Emrich will attend the University of Miami in fall. She plans to major in Environmental and Civil Engineering.
Shannon was a member of the NKHS National Honor and Spanish Honor Societies, and was on the indoor and outdoor track and field teams. An animal lover, she has devoted many hours volunteering at the North Kingstown Animal Shelter.
Kyle Sayre will attend the Virginia Polytechnic Institute in Blacksburg, Virginia, where he plans to major in Environmental and Civil Engineering. Kyle was a varsity athlete in tennis and outdoor track, in addition to being a member of the National Honor and Foreign Language Honor Societies.
Kyle, an active member of the local community through volunteer work, as well as through his participation with Boy Scouts of America. He recently completed his Eagle Scout project.
See NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarship recipients from previous years.
Sally Sutherland had the honor of presenting the scholarship award to Omar Zaki at South Kingstown High School.
Omar Zaki will be attending Yale University in the fall. He plans to major in applied physics or molecular biochemistry with an eventual goal of MD/PHD.
Omar was a NRPA river monitor for the past four years as well as an earlier NRPA Youth Environmentalist Award winner. In addition, Omar was the Principal Bassoonist at the School’s Top Orchestra, captain of the Academic Decathlon, a varsity swimmer and an Eagle Scout.
Veronica Berounsky congratulates Gennifer Keller at the Narragansett High School graduation.
Gennifer Keller will study environmental science at the University of Rhode Island, which is not surprising as Gennifer was an NRPA water quality monitor and was an active member in Future Farmers of America serving as both a state officer and RI national representative delegate.
Gennifer also competed in the Rhode Island Envirothon, winning First Place in both Soils Competition and Environmental Issues.
In 2013 NRPA awarded $1,000 college scholarships to:
Ben Lee will study biology at St. Mary’s College of Maryland in the fall. He plans to major in biology. Ben has been a river monitor in the NRPA Watershed Watch program and volunteered with the annual Narrow River Turnaround Swim. He was the Captain of Narragansett High School’s National Ocean Science Bowl Team from 2011 to 2013 and a member of the band and cross country team.
Zachary Zuchowski, a varsity soccer player at Narragansett High School, will attend Brown University in the fall, where he plans to major in either molecular biology or biochemistry. For his senior project on human actions and the effect on marine ecosystems, Zach studied and created ecosystem biospheres from fish, snails and algae collected from Narrow River.
Chintanya Gopu will attend Northeastern University in the fall, where she plans to major in Environmental Engineering. Chintanya was a volunteer at the Environmental Protection Agency for two summers and was an active Earth Day participant. At SKHS, she played varsity tennis and participated in numerous school plays.
Rachel Moyer, who is interested in a career in medicine, will attend Lehigh University in the fall. Rachel was a Save the Bay volunteer and a counselor at the Save the Bay Camp. At SKHS, Rachel was a member of the drama club and literary journal, and had a major role in reorganizing the school sailing club.
In 2012, NRPA awarded $1,000 scholarships to:
Caitlin Bousquet, a graduate of Narragansett High School, attends to attend Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia.
Elizabeth Castro graduated from Narragansett High School and is a first year student at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
Annie Hall, a graduate of Narragansett High School, attends Northeastern University in Boston.
Tina Luo graduated from South Kingstown High School and now attends the University of California at Berkeley.
Following are the four 2011 recipients, their high schools and where they started their college careers:
Victoria Gallogly, The Prout School, University of Vermont
Margaret King, North Kingstown High School, Lesley University
Elena Suglia, North Kingstown High School, Brown University
Edward Trowbridge, Narragansett High School, University of Vermont
Following are the four 2010 recipients, their high schools and where they started their college careers:
Jennifer Castro, Narragansett High School, University of Rhode Island
Alice Toll, North Kingstown High School
Clifton Bueno de Mesquita, South Kingstown High School, Middlebury College
Stacey Moskwa, The Prout School, Cornell University
There were three scholarships awarded in 2009:
Elizabeth Elmstrom, South Kingstown High School
Elizabeth Lee, Narragansett High School
Shane McNamara, Narragansett High School
There were three scholarships awarded in 2008:
- Matthew Berry, North Kingstown High School
- Dana Sarubbi, Narragansett High School
- Marleana Peabody, South Kingstown High School
There were two scholarships awarded in 2007:
- Brett Cook, Narragansett High School
- Catherine Coupland, South Kingstown High School
Two students received scholarships 2006:
- Mario Forte, Narragansett High School
- Allison Malo, North Kingstown High
Two students received scholarships 2005:
- Jesse Malo, North Kingstown High
- Jacqueline VanSant, Narragansett High School
Two students received scholarships 2004:
- Rosalinda Fortier, Narragansett High School
- Kevin Smith, North Kingstown High School
In 2003 NRPA awarded scholarships to:
- Kyle Marshall, Narragansett High School
- Lindsey Casagrande, South Kingstown High School
In 2002 NRPA awarded scholarships to:
- James Bruneau, North Kingstown High School
- Drew Lorenc, Narragansett High School
- Christopher Nunes, South Kingstown High School