The Margaret Derwin Scholarship for Housatonic Valley Regional High School

Scholarship Guidelines

WHO CAN APPLY

Residents of Region One School District, CT who are in their junior year at Housatonic Valley Regional High School.

Please note: If you are applying to the Margaret Derwin Scholarship, you do not need a Student Aid Report and you do not need to fill out the FAFSA. The application does require a 2015 or 2014 copy of your parents Tax Return. 

SCHOLARSHIP INFORMATION

“'There's no use trying,' she (Alice) said 'one can't believe impossible things.' 'I daresay you haven't had much practice,' said the Queen. 'When I was your age, I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

Are you a Junior at Housatonic Valley Regional High School? Have you believed “impossible” things? Do you dream of an exciting future doing interesting work in the world and helping others? Are you accomplished in school? Dedicated to your dreams? Have significant financial needs? Are you ready to step up to your own best possibilities? Is the sky your limit?

Margaret Derwin
This scholarship is named for Margaret Derwin who graduated from Housatonic Valley Regional High School. Margaret grew up in North Canaan and decided that she wanted to be a social worker. Through her own efforts she learned of a program at Wheelock College in eastern Massachusetts, applied and was accepted. She then proceeded to assemble numerous scholarships and private support for her tuition for all four years. She was a disciplined scholar who loved life and was on the Dean’s List for all her time at Wheelock. After receiving her BA, Margaret decided to go on to graduate school. Wheelock had the program she was interested in and again Margaret succeeded in securing sufficient scholarship monies to pay for her Master’s program. Just before she was to enter the program, she was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma, a malignant bone tumor. Margaret fought her illness valiantly with medical support from the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston but regrettably died in November 2010.

Margaret was a first rate student and even more was determined to follow her dream in spite of any obstacle that she faced. And there were many. She evidenced a kind of spunk and spirit that, had she lived, would have led her to exciting positions in the world where she would have easily been a leader and an inspiration to many others. Margaret had the ability to see beyond her own horizons and imagine a life that was bigger than her surroundings. She had talent certainly but also the important attribute of high aspirations. These are the characteristics of our future Derwin Scholars.

ELIGIBILITY

Applicants must:

  • be in their Junior year at Housatonic Valley Regional High School.
  • have been an enrolled student at Housatonic Valley Regional High School for two years prior to application.
Who is the ideal candidate for this Scholarship?
  • An exceptional student with financial need for whom this award will mean getting the very best educational experience.
  • A student who can demonstrate ambition and drive through attempts to secure other support/awards. A student who is proactive in going after every available opportunity to succeed with his/her goals.
  • A student who might be limited in his/her academic choices and for whom this scholarship will be a life-changing opportunity.
  • A student who will use his/her education as a springboard to a strong career, showing leadership and commitment to giving back to their community.
  • A student who will become a mentor to future Derwin scholars.
All three of the following criteria will have equal weight in making the selection:
  • Academic achievement with a history of rigorous course selection and completion.
  • Evidence of ambition/motivation to secure a bright future for yourself.
  • Financial Need/Impact of scholarship assistance.

AWARDS

The Margaret Derwin Scholarship Fund will offer one student from Housatonic Valley Regional High School the opportunity to think beyond the ordinary and embrace the possibility of achieving something wonderful in their lives, a “blue sky” opportunity. A Junior will be selected this spring to be the Margaret Derwin Scholar. S/he will receive support up to $5,000 for a national or overseas summer community service program* (July/August 2017) and up to $25,000 for tuition and associated costs of attending the college of their choice anywhere in the United States for 2018/19 and each of the following three years of college.

REVIEW CRITERIA

Applications will be reviewed by Berkshire Taconic staff to ensure that eligibility requirements are met. The Selection Committee will then review them and make their determination based on the criteria outlined above.

The Margaret Derwin Scholarship Fund
A group of Northwest Corner residents has pooled resources to make the Margaret Derwin Scholarship available. The donors want to encourage our public high school students to dream big, set aspirations high and take firm steps to achieve what might seem impossible but is not achievable without vision, talent and effort. The donors fully believe that it is essential for our students to set their sights high and move toward a cherished goal incrementally and steadily. The Derwin Scholarship will reward those who do. Our students are our future employers, employees, entrepreneurs and leaders. Our community needs the next generation of leaders who are knowledgeable, flexible and fully informed about the world’s resources. Our democracy needs innovative problem solvers, articulate spokespeople, and compassionate citizens. An excellent education is the keystone of our future leaders. The Derwin Scholarship is a community effort to support our future.

*Participation in a summer program is an important part of the Blue Sky Scholarship. The selected student will have up to $5,000 available to travel overseas or to another part of the United States to participate in a community service program of his/her choice. Listed below are several website that may prove helpful in making a selection.

Transitions Abroad
Global Routes
American Field Service
Rustic Pathways