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Class of 1957's Scholarship Award 
Goes to FRHS 2008 Graduate 
Nanayaa Serwaa

Excerpts from Irene Steinberg Shapiroís e-mail, (who attended Awards Night with Ruth Altman, Susan Wallach Weiss, and Eileen Rollo Pontrello):

On June 2, 2008 after 51 years, I returned to FRHS to present the Class of 1957 College Scholarship Award to Nanayaa Serwaa, Class of 2008. As I went through the main entrance, I immediately noticed  three security guards stationed at a front desk, the first of many changes. To my dismay, the center rotunda was smaller than I remembered, and the halls were narrower.  Ruth, Sue, Eileen and I were directed to a room in the basement, decorated with balloons and painted that dingy blue, available only through the NYC Board of Education. The turnout was small and the Principal did not attend.  But nothing could dim the happiness that beamed from our winnerís face. She was dazzling - young,
pretty, calm, assured, articulate and very charming. Nanayaa should be proud with her outstanding record and her accomplishments reflecting emotional maturity, intellectual rigor, strength of character, and the ability to commit to a goal. Given her circumstances, her achievements are awe-inspiring.

I found the Awards event to be very moving. I was so aware of how much the school has changed in the past years - it has certainly been a fall from grace. I had to smile when a young man received the Philip Tietze Award. I donít think he, (or anyone other than the four of us), knew who Mr. Tietze was, but I immediately remembered his huge stature and bellowing voice of authority.

I was also moved in another way. Usually when I make a donation, I write a check, mail it to some large organization, and hope that it trickles down to a worthy project. But here I could see before me the actual beneficiary of my donation. I looked at that happy face and realized my contribution would directly impact this girlís life. My money might buy a textbook, pay for some lab material, or just a coffee with friends in the Student Union. I felt so good and so proud to see the results of our Class of 1957ís award. This scholarship will help Nanayaa reach her goal of becoming a doctor, do good in the world, and I will know in some way I have helped and am a part of whatever Nanayaa achieves.

Excerpts from Ruth Altmanís email:

While the ambience at FRHS left much to be desired, I was able to look beyond that and focus on Nanayaa and her accomplishments. Nanayaa received several other awards and clearly is an outstanding student.

While talking to her, I was even more impressed with her accomplishments. Nanayaa and her older sister, presently in her first year at SUNY, Buffalo, moved to Far Rockaway two years ago. For her to have made such a remarkable adjustment as a teenager to a new city, new environment, and a new school, and to have achieved so much is a compelling reason for me to believe she will make it in this world. I do think she will need more help along the wayómostly financial, and it is something we might explore in the future.  I felt really good about our award recipient and am very confident she will do us all proud.

From me, Linda Stone Shure:

I so wish I was able to be at the FRHS Awards Night with Irene, Ruth, Sue and Eileen this past Monday night. For me, there is no better feeling than to experience the excitement and gratitude of someone who is the recipient of my efforts and monetary contributions.

Many of us have worked hard this year to raise a substantial amount of money to present to an exceptional and worthy student from the school where we all began our dreams 50 years ago. To have some impact on a young adult, starting out with her own dreams, is to me, what brotherhood and charity is all about. I personally feel it is recognizing and appreciating what I presently have and giving me an opportunity to assist someone young and capable to make her own unique contribution, making our world a better place for my children, grandchildren and friends.

I just want to mention that we have had 26 alumni a part of this Award. Not all have e-mail addresses, like Jacqueline Kuch Callen and Joan Kleinman Tushen. I will mail this to Jackie but do not have a current address for Joan. If anyone does, please print and mail to her. The rest of us who can be very proud are:

Susan Wallach Weiss
Rosalind Seidenstein Schull
Nick Papouchis
Brenda Finkel Liebling
Alan and Lucy Katz
Helen Meyer Weinstein
Kenny Handel
Mike Gold
Mike Wolpov
Paul Roth
Steve Kandall
Ellen Cohn Levy
Wil Finkel
Babette Schorr Bandler
Ruth Altman
Len Zuckerman
Howard Murad
Emily Rand Breitner
Roy Cravzow
Gail Bookvar Jurrist
Cynthia Freeman Wellins
Irene Steinberg Shapiro
Eileen Rollo Pontrello
Linda Stone Shure

We should all be very proud of pulling this off, scattered and disconnected as we are, except for our four year shared experience from 1953 to 1957. (Of course, some of us  shared lots of fun years together at P.S. 104, also).

Any additional donations from anyone from any year are welcome.  Please contact me via e-mail:

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