By Cassie MacDonell
Local Journalism Initiative
On Wednesday, the Lampe Foundation awarded local students roughly $27,000 worth of scholarships and bursaries at the foundation’s first in-person awards ceremony since 2019.
Since 1993, the community-based non-profit organization has supported students in the Eastern Townships and across Canada in the continuation of their studies with financial assistance and mentoring. The Lampe Foundation is an affiliate of Sherbrooke and District’s chapter of the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW). Over 29 years, the foundation has given out roughly $450,000 in awards to students.
Caitlyn Gerrish, one of two recipients of the Eileen Healy Prize for Leadership, expressed her gratitude to the Lampe Foundation. “I want to thank (the Lampe Foundation) for everything they do. I think it’s amazing they continue to give back to students who want to pursue their studies and pursue what they’re passionate about,” Gerrish said.
Already, Gerrish is making her mark in the Eastern Townships. She is at Bishop’s University pursuing an Honours in English Literature and a double minor in Communications and Entrepreneurship. She works two jobs in North Hatley, one in retail and the other in communications. Additionally, she started her own ice cream business which she sells out of her house and at the North Hatley Farmer’s Market. Her goal is to complete a Ph.D. in English Literature. “I’m really happy (about the award), it’s a sigh of relief,” said Gerrish.
Luckily for the Eastern Townships, Gerrish plans to start a career in the area after she finishes her post-secondary education. Many of the Lampe Foundation’s awards target exceptional students who plan to stay in the area. “North Hatley is definitely my home. I’ll probably stray for school but it will always be my home base.”
Another award winner, Zachary Désy, echoed Gerrish’s sentiments. “The awards help quite a lot. It’s nice to have some (financial) assistance,” Désy said. Désy is a science student at Champlain College with plans to attend McGill for Physics in September. “Science is a way to answer questions about life,” Désy said, “it’s a quest for knowledge.” He received the Ouida Ramon Moliner Scholarship for Science, commenting he is grateful for the foundation’s financial contribution which will help him on this journey.
Heather Bowman, Lampe Foundation Co-President, extended her thanks to all the award-winners, board members, and the many donors who have contributed to help in the Lampe Foundation’s mission to support students at all levels of education. The foundation will host another awards ceremony in December.
“We haven’t done anything like this in two years so it’s just wonderful to be here with the scholarship winners and their guests,” said Bowman.