Tech Collective, Industry Award $3,500 in IT and STEM Scholarships

Lighthouse Computer Services and Doug Schwinn scholarships benefit two Rhode Island students attending the University of Rhode Island this fall.

Tech Collective, Rhode Island’s Bioscience and Information Technology industry association, today announced scholarships totaling $3,500 have been awarded to two graduating Rhode Island high school seniors pursuing IT and Mathematics education at the University of Rhode Island this fall. The scholarships are funded by Lighthouse Computer Services and the Doug Schwinn Scholarship Fund; they are managed by Tech Collective.

Since 2009, Tech Collective has allocated $28,500 in scholarships to 14 Rhode Island students. 2014 scholarship recipients are:

Lighthouse Computer Services/Tech Collective Scholarship

$1,000 scholarship awarded to a Rhode Island student studying IT/CIS/MIS at a Rhode Island college/university and with an affiliation to one of the five US Military branches.

Recipient: Hayden Kendall – 2014 Chariho High School graduate. Hayden will be pursuing a major in Computer Science with Cyber Security and Computer Forensics at the University of Rhode Island. Hayden’s grandfather served in the US Army and was honorably discharged.

Doug Schwinn/Tech Collective Scholarship

$2,500 to a female or minority student interested in pursuing a major in the STEM fields. 

Recipient: Antoinette Bongiorno – 2014 Smithfield High School graduate. Antoinette will be pursuing a major in Mathematics at the University of Rhode Island. Antoinette is also a 2014 recipient of the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing.

Upon taking computer science courses at Chariho High School, Hayden says he “immediately began to understand the ways that computers worked [and] how hardware was intertwined with software to create user-friendly operating systems and programs.” Hayden wants to pursue computing as a career so he may be able to “create a more user-friendly interaction between people and computers.”

Hayden says of his scholarship award, “By awarding the Lighthouse Computer Services Scholarship to me, you have lightened the financial burden that my parents and I must carry… and I cannot be more grateful for the opportunity you have given me.”

Antoinette similarly has a passion for studies in Mathematics. In her senior year at Smithfield High School, she completed three advanced mathematics classes out of pure love of the discipline: AP Computer Science, Probability and Statistics EEP/Honors, and Discrete Mathematics. As she prepares to attend URI in the fall, Antoinette says of her scholarship award, “In my almost eighteen years, I have never been held back from anything because of one income in my family, until now… paying for my education has presented a serious problem… The award of the Doug Schwinn Scholarship makes living on campus next semester a reality for me. It has been my dream to attend college and I have worked hard in and out of school to make that dream come true.”

Scholarship recipients are chosen by Tech Collective’s Women in Technology Committee based on their scholarship essay, scholastic record, resume, and teacher recommendations.

“As a company committed to ongoing education and excellence, Lighthouse is honored to be able to help Hayden pursue a career in Computer Science at the University of Rhode Island,” said Tom Mrva, Founder and CEO of  Lighthouse Computer Services. “In today’s knowledge-based economy, it’s important for companies that rely on IT talent to support associations like the Tech Collective in their efforts to make careers in computer science possible for deserving students right here in our home state.”

“Tech Collective is proud to support our local students pursuing IT and STEM studies in Rhode Island,” said JoAnn Johnson, manager of youth and education programs for Tech Collective. “Rhode Island is home to many innovative companies looking for the passion that Hayden and Antoinette possess. With the help of these scholarships, we look forward to them turning their passion into an education and successful career. We also thank Lighthouse Computer Services for their continued support and generosity.”

Each year, Tech Collective partners with local companies on its scholarship program to raise technology career awareness and provide monetary aid to students pursuing STEM studies. For more information and to view past scholarship recipients, visit www.tech-collective.org

About Lighthouse Computer Services:
Lighthouse Computer Services is an IT solutions provider for the Northeast that uses best-in-class technologies and services to solve critical business needs. Founded in 1995, our mission was, and is, to build long-term technology partnerships with all our clients and to support them with the most advanced, devoted, and experienced team. Today, we are one of the most recognized and awarded IBM Premier Business Partners in the US and a recent inductee into SC Magazine Innovators Hall of Fame for excellence in technology and customer service. For more information about the company, please visit
www.LighthouseCS.com.

About Tech Collective:
Tech Collective is Rhode Island’s Information Technology and Bioscience Industry Association. Uniting industry, government and academic stakeholders, our mission is to inspire, engage, educate and employ a high-skill, high-wage Knowledge Economy in Rhode Island. Since its transition from the Rhode Island Technology Council (RITEC) in 2004, Tech Collective has received more than $8M in federal, state and private grant funding to foster industry collaboration, awareness and development through events and initiatives including: the Tech10 awards, the Rhode Island Bioscience Awards, GRRL Tech, Women in Technology, Bio-Ed, and STEM-based education and training programs for K-16 students as well as incumbent and transitioning workers. Get connected to Tech Collective at
www.tech-collective.org, on LinkedIn (Tech-Collective), on Twitter (@Tech_Collective), and on Facebook (TechCollectiveRI).

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