Van Wert High School held its Senior Awards Convocation for the Class of 2021 on Monday, May 10, 2021 in the Saltzgaber Music Hall of the Niswonger Performing Arts Center. Seniors were honored and recognized for their academic and co-curricular achievements garnered over the past four years. As a class, approximately 2.1 million dollars calculated over a 4-year period in scholarship opportunities were acknowledged during the awards program. Van Wert High School is proud to announce some of the following awards that were presented during the convocation.
Departmental Award Winners were as follows:
Sophie Rutkowski – Biomedical Science and Spanish
Jamie Burenga – Science, Mathematics, Project Lead the Way Pre-Engineering
Alexander McComas – Business & Computer
Alexandra Etter – Family & Consumer Science
William Ogden – German
Carly Rollins - Instrumental Music
Dru Johnson – Language Arts
McKenna Gilbert – Media Arts
Zach Mason – Social Studies
Autumn Howell – Visual Arts
Allison Schaufelberger – Vocal Music
The Van Wert County Veterans office representatives, Paul Wilson and Ashley Showalter, recognized Ian Cowan, Logan Goodwin and Octavius Tucker for enlisting in the military after graduation.
Braun Industries Project Lead the Way Engineering Scholarship was awarded to a student completing the four-year Engineering program. Mr. Vincent Ozier, representing Braun Industries, presented the award to Jamie Burenga.
The Central Insurance Companies Educational and Charitable Foundation Scholarship awarded two scholarships this year to Van Wert High School students Rachel Spath and Jacob Wasson. This award is a $5,000 per year scholarship which is renewable for four years. This scholarship was presented by Central Insurance President Evan Purmort.
The Van Wert Optimist Club Service Scholarship is given to a student who has given volunteer service to the Van Wert community. Carly Smith received the scholarship from Optimist Club member George Scott.
Van Wert Service Pack Scholarship is sponsored by the Van Wert Service Club and recognizes students who have demonstrated community involvement through service projects and have been members of VWHS Service Pack. Anthony Adams, Service Club representative, presented the awards to this year’s recipients Owen Treece and Janie Trejo.
Kimberly Laudick and Kelly Houg, of the YWCA presented the YWCA – Young Women of Christian Leadership & Community Involvement Scholarships to Jamie Burenga, Grace Doctor, and Allison Schaufelberger.
The Junior Achievement Scholarship is given to students involved in the Junior Achievement Economics class. Whitney Sealscott, JA representative, awarded the scholarships to Alexander McComas, Owen Treece, and Jacob Wasson.
The Margaret Shaffer Maney Memorial Music Scholarship recognizes a student who plans to major in the area of music. The recipient this year is Dane Chiles, who was presented with the scholarship by Dondra Maney.
The John Fox Maney Memorial Business Scholarship recognizes a student who plans to major in business and has a desire to see the Van Wert community prosper. Kevin Maney presented this scholarship to Alexander McComas.
Chuck Thompson Scholar Athlete Award is named in honor of Mr. Chuck Thompson, a 1975 VWHS graduate, for students excelling in athletics and academics. This year’s award winners are Jamie Burenga and Owen Treece.
Schrader Realty sponsors an annual scholarship for area students. This year’s scholarship went to Van Wert High School student Grace Doctor.
Anita Zuber, Scholastic Bowl Advisor, recognized seniors William Ogden and Sophie Rutkowski for their accomplishments on the Scholastic Bowl Team.
Gaylord Leslie Golf Scholarship named in honor of Mr. Gaylord Leslie is given to a senior member of the Van Wert High School golf team. Golf coach Kim Doidge presented the scholarship to this year’s recipient Evan Knittle .
The Van Wert Rotary Club provided two scholarships to Van Wert High School seniors Jamie Burenga and Alexandra Etter.
The Psi Iota Xi Scholarship is given by the local chapter to area graduating students. Connie Hart, representing Psi Iota Xi, shared the scholarships with Elizabeth Rutkowksi and Sophie Rutkowski.
Van Wert Federation of Teachers Scholarship is given to students entering the field of education. Grace Doctor, Lyrissa Hammons, and Allison Schaufelberger are this year’s recipients.
Tom Hittle “Hero” Award is given in memory of Mr. Hittle to a student who has displayed an “I Can” attitude in situations that they have been given. Jordan Hurless received the award from Mr. Kerry Koontz, CEO and Career Counselor.
The V. H. Cooper Scholarship was presented to Carly Smith by Judy Krites.
The Captain George L. Purmont Prize was presented to Grace Doctor, Kirsten Dunning, Elizabeth Rutkowski, Sophie Rutkowski, and Janie Trejo.
The Shirley Johns Hart Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of Shirley Anne Johns Hart by her family. Mrs. Hart was a graduate of Van Wert High School - the Class of 1953. This scholarship is based on academic achievement and financial need and is chosen by the Faculty Committee on Awards. Isabella Carr and Rylie Rayer-Wilson were selected to receive this award.
The Adolph & Letitia Weck Memorial Scholarship is awarded to two students who rank scholastically in the top third of their class. Students complete an application and are selected by VWHS Faculty Committee on Awards. Recipients of this scholarship are Jamie Burenga and Owen Treece.
Eli Rollins was recognized with the American Association of Teachers of German Senior Award.
The Excellence in Theater Award was presented to Dane Chiles and Tayzia Havill by Melissa Bloomfield, Theater Production Instructor.
The Brandon Burlsworth Character Award is given to a football player who displays character and sportsmanship. Dru Johnson is this year’s recipient.
Mr. Trent Temple, Athletic Director, presented Rachel Spath and Jacob Wasson with the O.H.S.A.A. Archie Griffin Sportsmanship Award.
Lorynn German was recognized with Perfect Attendance during her 4 years of high school.
A scholarship in memory of Raynie Maelaine Rayer-Wilson was presented to Kirsten Dunning by Michael Semer.
A new scholarship sponsored by the Van Wert Athletic Booster Club was presented to Dru Johnson and Allison Schaufelberger by Club member Breanne Sudduth.
Devon West was presented with the Pettijohn Scholarship. This scholarship was given in memory of Dick and Alice Pettijohn and in honor of Mike Pettijohn for all the kindness shown to the Pettijohn family.
A Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America Award (FCCLA) was given to Lyrissa Hammons by Lynda Ragan.
Emilie Lewis honored Lyrissa Hammons with an award for Outstanding Achievement in Art.
The Excellence in Theatre Awards were presented to Dane Chiles and Tayzia Havill by Melissa Bloomfield.
Katie Bowersock and Judy Krites presented the American Red Cross Award to Jamie Burenga.
The Principal “Cougar Pride” Awards were given by Mr. Bob Priest to Evan Knittle and Carly Rollins. Students are chosen by Mr. Priest based on their involvement in school and extracurricular activities, character, respect, and school pride.