Sandy Stevens Spartan Shield Scholarship
Sandy Stevens was both an English teacher and the Spartan Shield newspaper Advisor at Pleasant Valley High School from 1978 - 1984. During her tenure, Ms. Stevens taught 1,000+ students in her classes, and the Spartan Shield established itself as a super power of student journalism. Winning numerous national and state awards for excellence at both the publication and student level, her coaching and guidance for students and their writing, editorial, layout, design, and the business of running a newspaper were unparalleled in the Quad Cities.
Taking students into the newsroom, often with little to no journalism experience, Ms. Stevens year after year created a dynamic of teamwork, collaboration, and a particular focus on excellence. There was always another rewrite that would improve a headline, tagline, or opening sentence. Her efforts over the years left an indelible mark on the proud history of The Spartan Shield at Pleasant Valley and is an important foundation for excellence that continues.
This scholarship honors a student who focused their energy in journalistic writing or more widely in the field of English. This student over their academic career at Pleasant Valley has demonstrated a particular passion for journalism writing demonstrated through submitting their content into competitions, publications, or for peer review.
The winner of this scholarship has challenged themselves to continually improve their journalism skills, accepted feedback as a gift, and pushed the boundaries of what is comfortable. The awardees is chosen by the administration/counselors. Each awardee will demonstrate the following:
· Needs to be well prepared by their K-12 experiences and to pursue some form of post-secondary education to expand and refine their skills and background
· Academic Preparation - the ability to reason, solve problems, apply knowledge, and communicate effectively
· Truth Telling - a commitment to sharing the facts, regardless how hard they are
· Interpersonal Skills - the ability to listen, empathize, and work effectively with others - individually or in groups
· Professional Behaviors - responsibility and dependability
Criteria to Apply
· Administration/counselors will select the senior applicant who exhibits the qualities of creativity, writing aptitude, and dedication to the craft of journalism.
· Spartan Shield / Publication involvement
· Plan to attend a college or vocational school upon graduation
Scholarship Personal Statement/Essay:
- Discuss briefly in 50 words or less your passion for journalism and writing.
- In less than 250 words (1700 characters), please tell us why you've chosen your field of study.
- In less than 250 words (1700 characters), please tell us what your plans are after your post-secondary education is complete.
- In less than 250 words (1700 characters), please tell us about one of the following: your ability to problem solve, work with others, and/or your dedication to the community.
- In less than 250 words (1700 characters), please tell us how you've overcome an obstacle.
- In less than 250 words (1700 characters), please tell us anything else about yourself you think the selection committee would like to know.
Past Scholarship Recipients
2022 Allisa Pandit