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ELOISE LIBRE

APRIL 11, 2015 - SCHOLARSHIP PRESENTATION AND BENEFIT DINNER DANCE

2010 SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT COMMENTS

Good evening.

I am honored to be here. All of you are extremely special to me. While I never had the privilege of meeting Kevin, I know that he left a meaningful impression on everyone he met; his commitment to organizations and to other people was great, and has inspired much of what I have become. Tonight Iíd like to talk about how your support and Kevinís inspiration perpetuates beyond the winners of this scholarship.

When I stood before you five years ago to accept this prestigious award, I never could have guessed where I would be today. Because of this scholarship, I was lucky enough to graduate debt-free, and I cannot emphasize enough how grateful I am for this. Graduating debt-free allowed me to accept an AmeriCorps internship in San Francisco. I am spending the year working for an environmental education program through the cityís Department of Recreation and Parks. Our program, called the Youth Stewardship Program, provides students all over San Francisco with a series of free field trips to parks within walking distance of their school. I teach hands-on lessons for 2nd-12th grade about topics such as ecosystems, plant and animal adaptations, urban gardening, and habitat restoration. For kids who rarely get a chance to explore outside, this is huge. For me, playing in the dirt with kids every day is the best job in the world!

My motivation to work in environmental education developed over time. As a kid, I was lucky enough to go on exciting hikes and ski trips with my family. Feeling the rush of alpine air from the summit of a mountain served as an important form of learning for me. My decade-long dedication to Camp Hazen YMCA fueled my love for outdoor adventure and passed it on to kids at summer camp. Before matriculating at Tufts in 2010, I jumped at an opportunity to get involved that would change my life Ė and accelerate my path towards environmental education. The freshman pre-orientation program I went on the week before school started was a 5-day canoe trip. That trip provided a community for me in college, developed my thirst for adventure, and introduced me to nine new best friends. The Tufts Wilderness Orientation connected me to people on the Ski Team, Mountain Club, and youth service opportunities that became pivotal in my college career. The following three years, after finishing my summer job at Camp Hazen, I volunteered a few weeks at the end of August to lead trips for incoming Tufts freshmen. During my senior year and throughout the following summer, the University hired me to coordinate the entire 2014 Wilderness Orientation program. These formative experiences in outdoor programming laid the foundation for my future in environmental education.

My favorite part about what I do in San Francisco now is that itís free for participating schools. This means that urban students, often from low-income families, get to expand their education in a different way, in an exciting way, in a way that I believe is so important. Recently, I was working with a group of fifth-grade students, hiking around a park and making observations. After the hike, we brainstormed ways to improve the park, and then worked together on a habitat restoration project. As we were pulling invasive weeds, a girl turned to me and said, ďI wish I could get outside more. Itís good for the park AND itís good for me!Ē

Getting kids outside, even just a few times over the course of the year, makes a big impact. Research shows that children who spend time outside are healthier, happier, and more focused in school. Giving young people opportunities to give back to their parks instills a sense of service learning and promotes a more sustainable environment. Outdoor education is something I strongly believe in. I feel incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to work with these students in what is my absolute dream job Ė an opportunity that would not have been possible without this scholarship and all of you.

At this dinner a few years ago, Mrs. Eidt gave me a wallet-sized photo of Kevin. Iíve kept it with me in my years at school, and since. The photo reminds me that it is important to leave a personal, meaningful impact on my community. Throughout high school and college, Kevinís legacy inspired me to live a life of charisma, kindness, and value. Now, that spirit encourages me to leave a positive impact every day on my students in San Francisco.

To the selection committee Ė thank you for believing in me. Your encouragement has allowed me to follow my dreams. To the contributors to the Fund Ė thank you for your support that reaches well beyond the winners of these awards. The ripple effect of your generosity spreads across students, families, and communities across the country. To the Eidt family Ė thank you for sharing Kevinís love. To my own family Ė thank you for instilling my sense of adventure, for allowing me to move to California, and for always pushing me to achieve higher goals.

I would also like to thank you all on behalf of my students in San Francisco, and on behalf of the city parks where we work. For every park habitat that we restore, and for every child who discovers a green space in the neighborhood, you deserve credit. As each winner of this scholarship goes on to leave his or her mark, wherever that may be, Kevinís legacy lives on. Thank you.



Latest News

Alyxie Harrick Joins Selection Committee

The Board of Directors is pleased to announce Alyxie Harrick, 2008 recipient of Kevin's Norwalk High scholarship, has joined the Scholarship Selection Committee beginning with the 2018 award. Alyxie is a 2012 graduate of Georgetown University, and currently a Senior Consultant, Corporate Strategy with Deloitte in New York City.


2017 Scholarships Awards

The Board of Directors is pleased to announce that Kevin's Fund will be offering $129,000 in scholarships for 2018, bringing the total value of scholarships awarded to $2M since the Fund's inception in 1997. Please read our Thanksgiving update letter for more details.


2017 Annual Report Letter

Read The Fund's annual update letter reviewing a remarkable year of success and support.


Boston College CSOM Honors Program

Congratulations to Hannah Say, BC '18, the 2017 recipient of the $18,000 CSOM Honors Program Scholarship. She was recognized at the year end Honors Program Banquet at Boston College on April 27, 2017.


Kevin Eidt Emerging Leaders Award

Congratulations to Joan Kennedy BC '20, who was named the recipient of Kevin Eidt Memorial Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) Scholarship at Boston College on April 11, 2017. ELP is one of the great programs for BC freshman and the Fund is honored to be associated with it's highest participant award.


2017 Scholarship Recipient Announced

Congratulations to Grace Bradley, the 2017 recipient of $100,000 Kevin M. Eidt Memorial Scholarship for the most outstanding senior at Norwalk High School. She was recognized at the annual Dinner Dance benefit held in Norwalk on Saturday April 8, 2017. Ava will be attending Furman University in the fall.


Grace Bradley



Scholarship Fund Accomplishments as of June 30, 2017
Recipients142
Awards$1,871,000
Funding as % of Contributions99.4%