Scholarships & Awards

As a community based, not-for-profit financial institution, CFCU is passionate and committed to helping our members, youth, and communities succeed on many levels. With the costs associated with higher education nearly insurmountable for some, we are pleased to offer scholarships to aid local youth. We also offer a Community Service Award, because we greatly value giving back to our communities through volunteerism and want to recognize exceptional youth that donate their time and care to help others.

2021 Recipients

CFCU proudly continued its support of local area students striving to better themselves and our local communities. In 2021, we awarded over $40,000 in Scholarships and Awards to high school graduates!

Your success is our passion!

Community Service Award

Hannah Fitzgerald - McGraw High School               

"She is one of a very few teens who places volunteerism and community service before her social needs and expects nothing in return." 

- Jen Fischer, Supervisor at St. Mary's Church

Sean Kennedy - Southern Cayuga Central School 

"His service at Our Lady of the Lake will serve as a bendchmark for others I work with in the future." 

- Rachael Tissot, Good Shepherd at Catholic Charities 

Emily McFadden - Geneva High School               

"Emily is a change agent, who reliably goes above and beyond." 

- Kristen Abbott, Chemistry & AP Environmental Science Teacher

Richard V.V. Stringham Scholarship

Alexia Angulo-Stevenson - Charles O. Dickerson High School

"She listens intently to feedback and responds to every piece of criticism with maturity and dignity. She heads her peers through a work ethic that is second to none.

-Jon Koeng, Principal

Jackson Crocker - Dryden High School

"Mr. Crocker leads with humility and respect and seeks to find common ground with others in an effort to move our community forward to success whether that is in the classroom, on the soccer field, or collaborating with the High School Leadership Team." 

- Joshua Bacigalupi, Superintendent of Schools

Matthew Eckstrom - Cortland Jr./Sr. High School

"His pride has fueled him to want to continue to frow, rather than resting on his accomplishments." 

- Shane Adams, School Counselor

Kirsten Fielding - Fayetteville-Manlius High School   

"Kirten is an extraordinaryily talented person who has the character, enthusiasm and work ethic both in and outside of the classroom to be successful." 

- Paul Muench, Teacher 

Irene Hwang - Ithaca High School                                                                    

"She has one of the most resilient and hopeful demeanors I have met amongst not only high school students, but people as well."

- Matthew Fellman, Physics Teacher

Evelyn Kim - Ithaca High School   

"She is a beacon of leadership in our band and community and is beloved by her fellow musicians." 

- Nicki Zawel, Director of Bands

Wisteria Kirk - Southern Cayuga Central School                                                        

"Her persistence and perseverance shown in mentoring should serve her well." 

-Lindsay Osborne, Y-Pal Mentoring Program Supervisor 

Shaylyn Nair - Ithaca High School

"She is an individual who has incredible work ethic, immeasurable positivism and an unfaltering determination to succeed." 

- Janet Bowman, FrenchTeacher

Hiedi Nydam - Dryden High School                                                             

"Heidi is a mature, responsible, highly motivated, and enthusiastic young woman and is well-respected in the community." 

- Travis Crocker, Science Teacher

Hannah Partigianoni - Cortland Jr./Sr. High School

"She works hard both on the ice and in the classroom, and it shows.." 

- Jeremy Lopata, Hockey Coach 

Max Rubenstein-Miller - Ithaca High School

"He is a curious and skilled young musician, perhaps one of the most exception I've ever taught." 

- Kristin Zaryski, AP Music Theory Teacher

Diva Shrivastava - Ithaca High School

"Diva proved herself to be flexible and growth-orientated student, often seeking out and then folding in constructive critiscism into her own thinking and growth." 

- Michael Reiff, English Department Leader

Alexis Stiles - McGraw High School                                                    

"Alexis is a hard working student, positive role model for her peers, and a dedicated athlete with a love for the outdoors."

- Pamela Coombs, Business Tech Prep/Computer Education Teacher

Henry Storch - Cortland Jr./Sr. High School

"Henry is a tremendously gifted student, but more importantly, he is exceptionally kind, hard-working, and thrives under pressure." 

- Charles Canestaro, Physics and AP Physics Teacher

Skandan Subramanian - Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan Sr. Secondary School

"Always thinking outside of the box, he inspires his teachers and peers to extend their horizon beyond the text." 

- Sri Vidhya Chandrasekaren, Physics Teacher 

Nick Thurston - Southern Cayuga Central School 

"He has been described as a 'friend to all' and I would echo that assessment." 

- Justin Frisbie, Interim Athletic Director & Assistant Principal

Sawyer Tierney - Ithaca High School   

"He is a young man with many talents, a real desire to learn, an incredible work ethic and even though he is very modest about all of his achievements, I feel certain that he will meet the challenges at any university or college to which he applies with steadfastness and with success." 

- Janet Bowman, French Teacher

Saba Weatherspoon - Ithaca High School   

"Saba is a student who has always been reliable, honest and inquistive and additionally she has never failed to met every challenge with bright enthusiam and unflinching determination to achieve her goals." 

- Janet Bowman, French Teacher

Morgan Wilcox - Lansing High School   

"Her leadership skills have become more evident as she reaches beyond her own family and club to become more involved in county and state leadership opportunities." 

- Brenda Carpenter, 4-H Club Volunteer Coordinator

Abby Wilder - Lansing High School   

"Abby always has a listening ear for her teammates and has a way of turning a negative comment into a positiove comment or encouragement." 

- Karen Gorsky, Armstrong School of Dance

Previous Recipients


Richard V.V. Stringham Scholarships:

Kathryn Aumick - Cortland Jr./Sr. High School
Samantha Benzel - Cattaraugus Litle-Valley High School
Kaley Driscoll - Southern Cayuga Central School
Gwenyth Gisler - Lansing High School
Morgan Haaf - Ithaca High School
Pearl Hettich - Cortland Jr./Sr. High School
Sidonie Lazarus - Ithaca High School
Cameron Lemberg - Ithaca High School
Matthew Luby - Newfield High School
Margaret McCurdy - Charles O. Dickerson High School
Caelan Murphy - Dryden High School
Suong Nguyen - Ithaca High School
Lauren Reeves - Groton Jr./Sr. High School
Averie Roberts - Groton Jr./Sr. High School
Jacob Schmidtt - Southern Cayuga Central School
Cora Smith - Waverly High School
Evelyn VanNess - Charles O. Dickerson High School

Community Service Awards:

Tyler Abbott - Southern Cayuga Central School
Paige Euson - MarathonHigh School


Richard V.V. Stringham Scholarships:

Adam Brown - Homer High School
Asha Duhan - Ithaca High School
Lauren Fish - Lansing High School
Benjamin Haefner - Charles O. Dickerson High School 
Saige Jackson - New Roots Charter School
Sarah Karnes - Ithaca High School
Catherine Kopp - Southern Cayuga Central School
Alison Lantry - Sandy Creek High School
Janice Lee - Ithaca High School
Desirae Livermore - McGraw High School
Anthony Pawlewicz - Newfield High School
Irena Rosenberg - Ithaca High School
Alexander Ryan - Cortland High School
Tony Yang - Ithaca High School
Elyssa Yonta - Cortland High SchoolSaige Jackson - New Roots Charter School

Community Service Awards:

Conner Bennett - Southern Cayuga Central School
Catherine Kopp - Southern Cayuga Central School
Anna Lewis - Lansing High School
Menelik Weatherspoon - Ithaca High School


Richard V.V. Stringham Scholarships:

Cynthia Chen - Ithaca High School
Reed Cleland - Homer High School
Rachel Coombs - McGraw High School
Jon Frederick - Cortland High School
Natalie Gier - Cortland High School
Brooke Henderson - Ithaca High School
Garam "Popo" Hong - Ithaca High School
Jordan Lu - Ithaca High School
Auburn Noce - Charles O. Dickerson High School 
Elizabeth "Lizzy" Rayle - Ithaca High School
Caleb Richards - Home Schooled
Jamie Sayre - Spencer Van-Etten High School
Alyssa Thompson - Groton High School
Caleb Wilder - Lansing High School

Community Service Awards:

Mackenzie Perkins - Groton High School
Natalie Thomas - Marathon Central School


Richard V.V. Stringham Scholarships:

Jaedyn Allen – Groton High School
Katelyn Artibee - Charles O. Dickerson High School 
Bronwyn Galloway – Ithaca High School
Katherine Heath – Newfield High School
Sarah Jeon – Ithaca High School
Olivia Longhouse – Lansing High School 
Maybeck McCann – Charles O. Dickerson High School
Madelynne Newton – Cincinnatus High School
Tenzin Seldoen Oshoe – Ithaca High School
Sidney Reeves – Groton High School
Emily Sine – Ithaca High School
Anna Sutherland – Charles O. Dickerson High School 
Gavin Tabel – Cortland High School
Cameron Vanselow – South Seneca High School

Community Service Awards:

Mallorie Conroy – Charles O. Dickerson High School
Noah Kilmer – Homer High School

Education Committee

The CFCU Education Committee consists of employees and volunteer(s) from the CFCU Community Credit Union’s membership. The primary role of the Education Committee is to oversee CFCU’s annual scholarship and award program which includes 2-year scholarships, 4-year scholarships, and a Community Service Award.

The Education Committee is made up of the following employees and volunteers:
  • Jennifer Clark (Chair)
  • Art Bakert (Award Distribution Processor)
  • Kelsey Brown
  • Emily Conner
  • Leigh Alo
  • Laura Edick

Debbie Grusenmeyer

Debbie Grusenmeyer

Education Committee Member

Phil Cleary

Phil Cleary

Education Committee Member












Student Loan Options

CFCU Community Credit Union has partenered up with Student Choice to bring you access to student loans with great benefits:

  • Zero origination fees and lower rates than many other lenders.

  • Defer payments while you're in school (optional).

  • Structured as a Line-of-Credit (LOC), which you can then use over multiple years. The benefit is that with just one application you can qualify for a LOC that will cover the remainder of your undergraduate career (up to $75,000)*. Each year, you simply determine how much of the eligible LOC amount you'll need - without having to complete an entirely new application!

  • Flexible repayment options resulting in lower initial payments after graduation.

  • Reduce your interest rate by 0.25% during full repayment when you enroll in automatic payment.

Apply Now!

For questions, please contact the

CFCU Education Committee