Leesville Murphy Scholarship Closes May First

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Students can apply to the Murphy scholarship through a google form until May first. The application can be found on the scholarship board for April 2023. (Photo Courtesy of Lauren Taylor)

Applications for the Murphy Scholarship close May 1, 2023 after a month-long application period.

The Murphy Scholarship is open to all seniors with a GPA above 3.0 who will be attending college next school year. The $2,500 scholarship is a memorial to Leesville Road High School’s first Principal and recognizes people with a commitment to leadership, service, and lifelong learning. 

The application asks students to answer the question “How would you describe yourself as a leader, public servant and life long learner?” It also asks that students list their major contributions to LRHS and give the names of two staff members who would be willing to vouch for them. 

Angela Scioli is a retired LRHS teacher. She and a team of alumni, faculty, and administrators helped found the Murphy scholarship in 2011. Though she did not specify if she was on the scholarship board, she was able to explain what kind of people look over applications for the school. 

“Only employees serve and it is not publicized who serves so they can be as impartial as possible,” said Scioli via email. “There is not a set number of individuals on the committee, but it is typically 6-8 people.”

Though the amount of applications varies year to year, board members are always looking for the same traits in every student. 

“The committee is looking for students who have exemplified service to the school, leadership, intellectual curiosity, good citizenship and hard work. We envisioned the Murphy Scholarship as being the premier scholarship of the senior class and that is why it has historically been announced first at senior assembly,” she said. 

After a review of essays and applications, students who made it to the final round participate in an interview with the board members. 

“there is typically a round of interviews of a select few. Murphy family members often attend that round,” said Scioli.  

Ellie Thompson is a freshman psychology major at NC State and a 2021-2022 Murphy scholar recipient. Looking back on her application, Thompson saw her participation in school organizations as a huge advantage in the application.

“Throughout high school, I was involved in various clubs/ organizations within the school including the Newspaper, Leesville Liaisons, and FCA. I think these gave me an opportunity to get a pulse on the culture of Leesville and grow my love for the school,”  said Thompson via text.  “It is important to be involved in more than one discipline in high school to gain a better understanding of how different skill sets and experiences can impact your community.”

Thompson noted how the Murphy Scholarship has aided her as a student and a person. 

“In college, the Murphy Scholarship has been helpful both practically and generally. Practically, the financial benefit gave me some freedom for the basic needs of college, such as textbooks, food, housing, etc. Generally, however, the Murphy scholarship is a celebration of the value of investing in your school, committing to what you’re involved in, and diligence even in small things — it has served as a reminder that the values that are praised in high school continue into the future.” 

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