2017 PAEP Scholarship Winners Selected
A goal of PAEP is to assist deserving students in the pursuit of careers in the environment. By fostering the next generation of environmental professionals, we also serve our industry and ensure the continued improvement and enhancement of the world around us.
Fundraising for scholarships began in 2010 and the organization’s first scholarship was awarded in 2013 to Ms. Alexandra Ratliff. Since that time annual scholarships have been awarded, including:
- Two scholarships awarded in 2014 to Ms. Johanna Hripto and Ms. Sarah Lavin;
- Two scholarships awarded in 2015 to Mr. Levi Lundell and Ms. Caryn Senneett;
- Two scholarships awarded in 2016 to Ms. Kayla Maurer and Ms. Anna Rosswog; and
- Two scholarships awarded in 2017 to Ms. Megan Palko and Ms. Cassandra Papp.
The PAEP Gifford Pinchot Scholarship is awarded to a deserving student in Pennsylvania in their freshman or sophomore year of study. The PAEP Maurice Goddard Scholarship is awarded to a deserving student in Pennsylvania in their junior or senior year of study. Scholarships are offered annually, although the time of year may vary dependent upon committee preference.
In addition to a $1,000 scholarship, winners are able to attend the annual PAEP conference free of charge. Annual fundraisers for the scholarship include donations from corporate sponsors and members, the WTS-PAEP Annual Scholarship Golf Outing, and the Annual PAEP Conference Silent Auction. Occasionally, section events will run fundraisers to assist in making the program possible. The scholarship program is in need of donations. The amount of money fundraised will dictate the number of scholarships offered. Based on applications received, there are many, many students in Pennsylvania deserving of a scholarship. We need your help to make the program a continued success. Whether your donation is monetary or volunteer hours, it is all appreciated!
Megan Palko wins the 2017 PAEP Gifford Pinchot Scholarship!
Megan is a sophomore Environmental Science major at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, where she holds a 3.93 GPA. She is an active member and Secretary of the Greener Behrend Club, where she collaborates with other students on service projects to improve the environment on campus and throughout the surrounding community. In addition, Megan is working as part of a large research team of professors and students on a 200-level research project to document the effects of road deicers on the environment. The ultimate goal of the project is to use the data collected to change attitudes toward excessive use of deicing salts and to help Behrend College develop and implement a set of best management practices that will reduce the amount of salt used on campus. Megan is also part of a 400-level research project, which she planned, developed, and implemented with another student, studying the effect of the salt on the ability of stream ecosystems to process leafy debris. Megan has worked for several years as a salesperson with Palko’s Tree Service, providing customer service and operating and cleaning heavy machinery to produce mulch. While attending The Behrend College, she made the Dean’s List and was awarded the BC3 President’s Scholarship for academic merit and the Penn State Behrend Academic Scholarship. Megan is concerned about the state of the environment and recognizes the complexity of environmental issues and the need for problem solvers who make a difference. She is making the most of the research opportunities available to her to discover what her professional goals will be. Megan envisions a career where she can put her Environmental Science Degree to use to promote understanding and provide education on environmental issues and sustainability.
Cassandra Papp wins the 2017 PAEP Maurice Goddard Scholarship!
Cassie is a junior, majoring in Earth and Environmental Science and minoring in both Energy Studies and Geology at Wilkes University, where she holds a perfect 4.00 GPA! She is an active member and Secretary of Students for Environmental Sustainability, where she is responsible for member recruitment, club communications, and record keeping. Cassie is also a member of the Wilkes Geo-Explorer Club, the Air and Waste Management Association – Wilkes University Chapter, and Wilkes Adventure Education. Last year Cassie served as Historian for the Alpha Lambda Delta National Honor Society – Wilkes Chapter. Since August 2014, Cassie has served as a Wilkes University Student Ambassador. Her duties include enrollment of prospective students, management of the Wilkes University Admissions social media sites, and participation as a student leader for campus events, open houses, and prospective student shadowing opportunities. In addition, she holds an internship with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Clean Water Program, Operations Unit. Through this internship, Cassie has been involved in Department inspections, compliance, and enforcement activities related to NPDES permits and she worked with Department biologists on lake and stream surveys, including sampling of water, fish, and bacti. During her studies at Wilkes University, Cassie has consistently maintained her place on the Dean’s List. She has also been awarded The Cromwell E. and Beryl Thomas Outstanding Junior Scholarship for an outstanding junior Earth and Environmental Sciences major involved in extracurricular activities and maintaining a high-grade point average. Following her undergraduate studies, Cassie is considering pursuing additional research opportunities and a graduate degree. She is interested in a career that allows her to educate others about the environmental sciences. Cassie looks forward to making a significant contribution to the environmental science field of study through identification and investigation of environmental issues resulting in studies and solutions that will mitigate negative environmental impacts.