2022 Named Scholarship Recipients
Over the years, some of our donors have contributed to scholarships created to honor specific individuals or groups. Below are the profiles of the 2022 Named Scholarship awardees.
The alumni of Stuart and Justice have generously contributed towards this award. This year’s recipient, Diego, is described as someone who is 120% committed to both academic achievement and extracurricular activities. One teacher claimed he is destined for “world-changing greatness.” Diego maintained a 4.4 grade point average as an International Baccalaureate diploma candidate. His Forensics and Debate Team went to the state finals, he participated in several school plays, and was president of the Thespian Society. Diego says he has always been fascinated by robotics and outer space. He will combine these interests when he studies aerospace engineering at Virginia Tech.
Sundus is the first recipient of JHSSF’s Ambassador Scholarship, awarded for four years to a student who has the talent and ambition to complete a four-year degree and who will be a good ambassador for the greater Justice HS community. Sundus is passionate about the environment and through Kaiser Permanente’s Youth in Action program used photojournalism to portray community environmental issues. But it was through chemistry that she truly began to understand the impacts of, and need for, environmental change. A committed International Baccalaureate student and active in many clubs, Sundus also had to take on heavy responsibilities at home, caring for her siblings and helping her immigrant mother become financially independent. Sundus will pursue her love of chemistry at George Mason University.
Decorate a Vet Scholarship
The Decorate A Vet organization honors Northern Virginia veterans whose service allows us all to lead freer lives. They award their annual scholarship to accomplished Justice seniors with a commitment to the ideals of liberty, duty, and service. Rahem and Princess are this year’s recipients. Rahem wrote about his sense of duty to his family. His immigrant parents have struggled to maintain a small business. Noticing the toll the work was taking on their health, Rahem committed to working as many hours in the store as he could, at considerable sacrifice, to try to lessen their burden. These traits will serve him well in his pursuit of a degree in cybersecurity at George Mason University.
Princess values kindness and empathy. She found from a young age that volunteering genuinely brings her joy, and she has volunteered at her church and as a mentor at Justice. Her values found purpose when she witnessed her cousin have a seizure, and she vowed to have a career in medicine to help those who could not help themselves. Princess intends to study nursing at Northern Virginia Community College.
Jennifer Discua Hernandez Memorial Scholarship
Established by Justice staff and alumni, the Jennifer Discua Hernandez Memorial Scholarship honors an English-language learner who will attend Northern Virginia Community College. Like the scholarship’s namesake, this year’s recipient, Rosalinda, emigrated to the U.S. as a child, knowing no English. She is grateful to finally be together with all eight of her siblings and regularly helps at home so her mother can work. Rosalinda stands out among peers at school and at work because of her kindness and active, intentional support of others. She quickly became part of the Justice community, playing soccer, advocating for her classmates, and motivating them to engage in learning. Rosalinda’s strong work ethic will serve her well in the future, too. She dreams of studying architecture, depending on herself, and owning a successful business one day.
Jeremy Munga Scholarship
The Jeremy Munga Scholarship recognizes the vital role the Justice Athletic Department plays in the school community. This year two students received this award. Neftali is described by one teacher as “one of the most intellectual student-athletes I have ever met.” Neftali maintained an impressive grade point average while playing three varsity sports. In football he was named the 2022 National District Defensive Player of the Year. Neftali also found time to work in the family business and volunteer at his church. He will attend Randolph-Macon College as a business major.
Frank was voted “most spirited” in his class. His teacher described him as a leader, whether it be in student government, participating on three sports teams, or coaching and mentoring younger students. Frank challenged himself academically, taking 12 International Baccalaureate courses. The second in his family to receive a JHSSF scholarship, Frank will major in business administration at Ohio State University.
Harriet "Ozzi" Mask Scholarship
The Ozzie Mask Scholarship, established to honor a retired Stuart teacher, is awarded to a student who wishes to pursue his or her degree in education, journalism, music, or theater. The senior editor of the yearbook, Aseel, worked hard to teach and inspire the yearbook staff. This is no wonder, as her English teacher wrote that, no matter her career path, Aseel will find ways to improve the lives of those she works with and the lives of those in her local community. Active in the Interact Club all four years, Aseel held a number of fundraisers for communities in Kenya and Swaziland. Outside of school, Aseel started a GoFundMe for the people of her family’s village in Egypt hit hard by the pandemic, raising a significant amount of money. Aseel overcame ingrained, generations-old family expectations that she marry and not finish school and will pursue a degree at American University.
Noreen Thomas Scholarship
Suliana is an ideal recipient of the Norene Thomas Scholarship. Like the scholarship’s namesake, Suliana contributed to the success of Justice bands. A skilled flautist, Suliana was Band Manager and led the flute section for Justice’s award-winning Marching and Wind Ensemble Bands. She also earned first chair in the district-wide Wind Ensemble Band. Yet Suliana’s accomplishments extend beyond music—to pursuing an International Baccalaureate diploma, co-captaining the Justice Rowing Team, and serving school and community through National and Hispanic Honor Society activities. Daughter of a single mom, Suliana emigrated to the U.S. as a preschooler and quickly developed the resilience and strength that would serve her well. Fighting a significant illness, her mother insisted Suliana concentrate on school and its activities rather than take a job to lessen the financial strain of the illness. Meanwhile, Suliana cared for her mother while maintaining the grades and community involvement needed to earn admission to the University of Virginia. At UVA, Suliana hopes to nurture her passion for human rights and become a “voice for the Latin-American community, and pave the way for success for kids like [her].”
Step It Up Foundation Scholarship
The Step It Up Foundation is a Northern Virginia-based philanthropic organization with the mission of “Helping People Help Themselves.” The sponsors of this award want to provide financial assistance to students planning to attend Northern Virginia Community College. Both Erika and Keylin are worthy recipients of this Foundation’s scholarship. Notwithstanding difficult backgrounds—both fled violence from their home countries—they each set challenging goals and worked hard to achieve them with the intent of obtaining a college education. In Erika’s case, she arrived in the U.S. in the 8th grade. Through hard work, perseverance, and a steadfast dedication to learning, she moved quickly through ESOL classes, eventually took International Baccalaureate and honors courses, and received high grades—all the while putting in hours outside school to earn income. Now she’s the first in her family to go to college. As one teacher put it, “Erika illustrates the American Dream is still alive and well.” Erika is leaning towards a career in education because of the impact she has seen education have on her and the direct impact she might have on other lives.
Keylin arrived in the U.S. and started at Justice HS in the 10th grade. Halfway through the year, her teachers moved her to a higher-level ESOL class. She improved her English to the point where she could, as a senior, take several IB courses, earn top grades, and graduate with an Advanced Studies Diploma. Keylin has a wide variety of interests, from art to music to computers; she taught herself piano and learned to build websites from an online summer class. She also enjoys helping others—for example, by teaching children at her church and tutoring at an elementary school. Her dream is to become a teacher to support her community and contribute to society.
Nancy and Eric Svendsen Memorial Scholarship
Nelly’s teacher notes her “perpetually positive attitude, her support for her peers, and her kindness and empathy.” These are precisely the traits JHSSF honors via the Svenson Memorial Scholarship. Emigrating to the U.S. in middle school, Nelly learned English and how to navigate her new country. School often took a back seat to caring for siblings and working to help support her family. Beginning in her sophomore year at Justice, Nelly learned to manage her time more effectively and gained confidence in herself and her abilities. She’s known for going out of her way to help other students kindly and compassionately. Nelly models how to ignore distractions to learning and helps English learners to understand key concepts. After attending George Mason University, Nelly hopes to travel and work with communities that are falling behind in the economy, particularly in her home country of Honduras.
Nancy J. Weisgerber Scholarship
Dianna is a first-generation American. Her first language was Spanish, and she participated in the ESOL program until the seventh grade. Dianna is the kind of student who Nancy Weisgerber, the scholarship’s namesake, would have been extremely proud of. Despite health problems, Dianna worked hard and overcame the obstacles in front of her, all the while showing a passion for learning. Her GPA was over 4.0, and she was a member of multiple and diverse honor societies, including Spanish, Science, and Art. Still, she made time to help others—for example, through her mentoring activities and participation in charity fundraisers. Reflecting her gratitude for the positive impact teachers had on her life, she plans to attend George Mason University and major in education, in particular elementary education—recognizing how crucial early education is to building the foundations for future success. She also wants to instill in students at an early age the drive and confidence to pursue higher education as an avenue for ensuring a better future for society overall. The Weisgerber Scholarship honors Nancy Weisgerber, a former principal of Stuart HS. Ms. Weisgerber, throughout her career, was committed to education and a concern for, and belief in, the goodness of others.