Faces of the Future

Northern Lights awards students $1,500 educational scholarships

By Elissa Glassman

NLI congratulates the eight scholarship recipients of this year’s $1,500 educational/vocational scholarship awards. Award certificates were presented at NLI’s 83rd annual membership meeting May 12 at the Sandpoint Event Center.

Photo of Liam Parnell

Liam Parnell graduated from Sandpoint High School and plans to attend North Idaho College in the fall.

“My dream is to become an underwater welder and help fix the world around me,” Liam says. “I’ve never loved something more than I love welding. I plan to attend North Idaho College to get my associate degree in welding technology. From there, I plan to enter the workforce until I can get either a commercial scuba diving certificate or get my bachelor’s degree in welding technology.”

Photo of Winona Young

Winona Young attends North Idaho College and is pursuing an associate degree in hospitality management.

“The greatest part about my life is the personal interactions that I have encountered and made me who I am,” Winona says. “It is not because of the things I do that make me who I am, it’s who I interact with.”

Writing is one of Winona’s favorite things to do. Her dream is to write books that will be passed along to the many people who are mentioned in them.

Photo of Carissa Lonzisero

Carissa Lonzisero is a graduate of Forrest Bird Charter School and has worked on getting her associate degree from North Idaho College since eighth grade. Carissa will attend the University of Montana in the fall.

“I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit, which is why I plan on receiving my bachelor’s degree in finance with a minor in business administration from the University of Montana,” Carissa says.

She plans to get her master’s degree at the Davidson Honors College in Missoula, Montana.

“After college, I would like to work for a successful finance corporation like Hellman & Friedman, and then, possibly start my own company,” she says.

Photo of Payton Frields

Payton Frields is a graduate of Thompson Falls High School and plans to attend Corban University in Salem, Oregon.

“While attending Corban University, I will be studying and working toward a bachelor’s degree in exercise science,” Payton says. “This degree will allow me to move on to graduate school and work toward a master’s degree, and in the end, earn my license as a physical therapist. I would then like to move back to Northwest Montana or Northern Idaho and either work for a hospital or clinic.

“In the long run, I would like to save up enough to open my own practice.”

Photo of Reece Bell

Reece Bell graduated from Bonners Ferry High School and will attend Boise State University this fall.

“My dream is to attend Boise State University and ultimately transfer to Idaho State University to finish a doctorate in physical therapy,” Reece says. “I am willing to sacrifice and work hard.”

Reece plans to get his bachelor of science degree in physical therapy and biology.

“I have always desired a career which I could be motivated and driven to do my best every single day while helping others and enjoying my work,” he says.

Photo of Mary Fioravanti

Mary Fioravanti is attending North Idaho College and will continue on to Cornerstone University in Michigan.

“I plan to graduate with my associate degree by May 2019,” Mary says. “My major is in business and accounting.”

This summer, Mary will get work experience in sales and business, and develop her leadership skills.

Photo of Cheyenne Lillis

Cheyenne Lillis attends North Idaho College.

“My future goal is to be able to make a difference in peoples’ lives, especially juveniles who are in trouble with the legal system, because I believe everyone has the potential to change their life for the better,” Cheyenne says. “Therefore, I want to go to college and get the knowledge to better my efforts in helping those juveniles turn their lives around and make their futures bright.”

Photo of Ashley Rotchford

Ashley Rotchford is attending Spokane Falls Community College and plans to earn an associate degree in the occupational therapy assistant program.

“I am confident that the determination and the hard work that I have displayed thus far will keep growing stronger as my course work becomes more demanding,” Ashley says.

They Said It

Our scholarship applicants were asked to write an essay on what it means to be a member of a cooperative. Here are some of the highlights from those essays:

Ashley Rotchford wrote that being part of a cooperative is more than just “owning part of a business”—it is more personal than other businesses because it is locally owned, which makes it a much smaller scale than your typical corporation.

Cheyenne Lillis wrote that to be a member of a cooperative is to be part of a great family. She witnessed NLI linemen working around the clock to restore power after the windstorm of November 2016.

“The tireless devotion to duty under the harsh conditions displayed the resolute commitment to the NLI community, and it felt like family,” says Cheyenne. “Obviously, we all want electricity and services, yet NLI staff and linemen were professional, expeditious and, most importantly, compassionate in all responses.”

Reece Bell wrote that a benefit of a co-op is that they have concern for the community. “Northern Lights works to provide a service that improves lives on a daily basis while at the same time remembering to give back to the community through scholarships and education,” he says. “I am proud to say today’s rural electric co- ops, including Northern Lights, represent the best of American values and that is why I am proud to be a member.”

Payton Frields wrote that after taking the time to read NLI’s mission statement, he gained a greater understanding of the cooperative.

“I believe that being a member of a cooperative means that you are a member of something bigger than yourself and that the co-op looks after you, and in the end, each member,” he says.