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SMECO Awards Scholarships


Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO) has awarded four scholarships to high school seniors for 2019 to students who live in the Cooperative’s service area. Scholarships are based on the applicants’ scholastic achievement, financial need, and school and community involvement. SMECO has awarded scholarships to 108 students in the 27 years since beginning the program in 1993. Each of the following students will receive a $1,500 college scholarship: Alyssa Dorsey, Samuel Guzzone, William Runyon, and Andrew Tolarski.

Alyssa Dorsey, graduate of Chopticon High School in St. Mary’s County, plans to attend the College of Southern Maryland and to pursue a career in nursing. She is an active volunteer with the Hollywood and Mechanicsville volunteer rescue squads. Through the Academy of Health Professions at the Dr. James A. Forrest Career and Technology Center, Dorsey has worked to earn her Certified Nursing Assistant certificate. She has also competed in Skills USA and was awarded first place at a regional competition. Dorsey also completed an internship in the emergency room at MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital. Cara Grysko, a counselor at Chopticon, said, “Alyssa’s commitment and dedication of her time to her school and community illustrate her selflessness and admirable traits. With her desire to succeed, self-motivation, and academic focus, any school or work organization would be honored to have her as part of their team.” Dorsey is the daughter of Scott Allen Dorsey of Mechanicsville, Maryland.

Samuel Guzzone, son of Amy and Darren Guzzone of Indian Head, Maryland, is a graduate of Henry Lackey High School in Charles County. Guzzone plans to become a mechanical engineer. An accomplished athlete and musician, Guzzone played soccer and tennis at Lackey, and he played in the symphonic band and jazz band. He is also the drummer in the Flippin’ Eyelids, a band he formed with his brothers. Guzzone is also active in the Mathematics Engineering Science Accomplishment club, the National Honor Society, 4H, It’s Academic and Chess Club. He has done volunteer work through the Appalachian Service Project and Farming4Hunger. Laura Buzzell, the Chair of the Mathematics Department at Lackey, said, “Samuel is very talented in math and science, and he is one of the most well-rounded students that I have ever taught. He leads by example and encourages his teammates and colleagues to work harder than they ever have before. Samuel has been extremely successful in all of his endeavors.” 

William Runyon, graduate of Thomas Stone High School in Charles County, plans to attend Georgia State University and to pursue a career as an attorney. Runyon is a musician who has played the violin since elementary school. He performed with the All-County Orchestra and for the musical Beauty and the Beast at Thomas Stone. He also plays guitar and participated in the musical All Shook Up at Stone. As a student of Aikido, a Japanese martial art that promotes peace and cooperation, and Iaido, which relies heavily on focus and patience, Runyon said, “I can apply the lessons in focus, patience, and discipline in my school environment, as well as in my life in general.” When faced with an Advanced Placement test, he added, “I simply took a deep breath and focused on the task at hand, quieting the mental chatter just as I would on the mat when training.” Runyon is the son of Lea Sadler of Waldorf, Maryland.

Andrew Tolarski, graduate of Leonardtown High School in St. Mary’s County, plans to attend the University of Maryland and to major in Music Education in order to become a music teacher. He plays the viola and piano and sings. Tolarski said, “My goal is to be a teacher, not only to instruct, but to help people grow. I want to be able to look back at what I have done and see the results as contributing to the growth and happiness of other human beings.” He is a member of the International Thespian Society and was the student conductor of two choirs for the Maryland All-State Chorus. He is a choir section lead at Lexington Park United Methodist Church, a member of the community choir Musica, and a volunteer and employee at Greenwell State Park, where he assists with summer camp. Tolarski is the son of Laura Tolarski of Hollywood, Maryland.

SMECO provides scholarships to local students who excel in their endeavors and who show promise in their chosen field of study.

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