Scholarship committee member Melody Hannegan, scholarship winner Shanelle Marie Fernando, honoree Regina Munsch, honoree Siddarth Narayan, scholarship chairperson Peggy Amatangelo, honoree Alexander GiorgettiMcCandless Town Hall was the setting for the Eleventh Annual McCandless Democratic Committee Scholarship Presentation Tuesday, June 7, 2016. Former 2013 Scholarship recipient Connor M. Phillips was the guest speaker who is presently studying at Duke University. Phillips will be in Washington, D.C., this summer, on a full scholarship to participate in the Hertog Foundation Political Studies Program, a seven-week seminar in the theory and practice of politics.

This year the Scholarship Committee chose Shanelle Marie Fernando as the 2016 $1,000 Scholarship winner. Headed to Emory University, Shanelle impressed the Scholarship Committee with her dedication to service. Through her national nonprofit Youth Speakers For Change, Shanelle teaches public speaking to suburban and inner-city youth. Passionate about closing the opportunity gap, she helps these youth find their voice. The McCandless Scholarship Committee was impressed by Shanelle’s essay, in which she wrote about the humbling experiences she shared with her students. Shanelle devotes herself to scientific causes as well, working with an investigator to engineer a solution to climate change in the laboratory.

The McCandless Democratic Committee awarded its first scholarship in 2006, and has raised more than $17,000 for students at North Allegheny through the efforts of the committee members. "Public education is one of the most important values of the Democratic Party, and we wanted to support civic-minded students in our area," said Ms. Amatangelo. "It has been a pleasure to meet so many bright young men and women who are politically engaged, and who volunteer in the community." Remaining in touch with these students via email keeps us in awe of their continued successes.

Past recipients of the scholarship have gone on to study political science, journalism, social work, and public health. Pavara Ranatunga, the 2012 scholarship recipient studying Aeronautical Engineering at PSU's Honor's program, is now in a Manufacturing Engineering Internship for United Aerospace Systems' Global Manufacturing division at York, Nebraska. Ms. Amatangelo added, many candidates who are worthy of the scholarship, are given additional smaller Honorariums. This year we awarded three honoraria of $400 each to Siddarth Narayon - Georgetown, Regina Munsch and Alexander Giorgetti - the University of Pittsburgh.

Ms. Amatangelo is a former staff member of North Allegheny School District. Her scholarship committee is comprised of two other former N/A teachers, and a professor at CCAC. The McCandless Democratic Committee members also volunteer at the North Hills Community Outreach, and raise money for other charities.

Thank you for your interest in our scholarship. We wish all of North Allegheny's Seniors success in their future endeavors.

We would like to thank the following donors:

Vince & Peggy Amatangelo
Elizabeth Coyne
Donald & Kathryn Green
Melody Hannegan
Jim Harpur
Elaine Hatfield
Ann Logue
Shirley Novak
Pavara Ranatunga
William Tjader
Western PA Laborers'

The Scholarship Committee
Peggy Amatangelo, Chairperson
Joyceann Ditka
Melody Hannegan
Jennifer Rapach