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Thursday, August 4, 2016

Olean High students receive CRCF scholarships

Jacob Cavana
OLEAN, N.Y., August 4, 2016 — Six Olean High School students recently received scholarships managed by the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation, including some specifically designated for Olean High School graduates.
Lyndsey Churakos, Jacob Cavana, Olivia MacWilliams, Shane Pancio and Miranda Sakala received the Signe, Svenborg, Agnes and Selma Johnson Scholarship.

Established through the trust of Signe H. Johnson, a former Portville and Olean high school teacher, this scholarship is given to Olean High School seniors with preference given to students who have strong educational/career goals or who plan to pursue a degree in teaching. The scholarship is named for Signe Johnson and her sisters, Svenborg, Agnes and Selma, all of whom were Olean High School teachers.

Lyndsey Churakos
Lyndsey Churakos, who will be attending Erie Community College to study liberal arts, received a $300 scholarship. Cavana, MacWilliams, Pancio and Sakala received a $500 scholarship. Cavana will attend Niagara County Community College to study liberal arts and sciences. MacWilliams will study childhood education at SUNY at Fredonia. Pancio will attend SUNY Geneseo to study business. Sakala will pursue an English degree at Alfred University.

Miranda Sakala and Mallory Bliss, who will attend Rollins College to study biochemistry, received the Mary-Elizabeth Smith Scholarship for $700.
Mallory Bliss

The estate of Mary-Elizabeth Smith established the scholarship as part of the Olean City School District Scholarship Fund.

Olivia MacWilliams also received the Ben and Rose Schwabenbauer Educational Scholarship.

Miranda Sakala
The $500 scholarship is given to one student from Olean High School and one student from Otto-Eldred Central or Bradford High school. Preference is given to students who have a record of community service, are pursuing an education or criminal justice-related degree, have maintained a 3.5 GPA and are in the top 25% of their class. Ben and Rose, former long-time teachers in the Olean City School District, established the scholarship.

Lyndsey Churakos also received the Daniel McCarthy Scholarship.

The scholarship, given through the generosity of the Catherine M. Cridler Trust, honors Mr. McCarthy, one of Olean Business Institute’s founders. The scholarship is available to graduating students pursuing a business degree.
Olivia MacWilliams

Miranda Sakala also received the Jack & Muriel Fogarty Memorial Scholarship.

The Fogarty Memorial scholarship is given to an Olean High School senior with a grade average above 80% who has been accepted into a four-year institution. The scholarship is $500 for four years, contingent on the student maintaining a GPA of 2.5 or better. The scholarship was established through the Olean City School District Scholarship Fund and Derek Hernquist and the DJH Foundation in memory of Mr. Hernquist’s grandparents.

Sakala also received the JoAnn Wehmeyer English Scholarship.

Shane Pancio
This $1,000 scholarship, established in memory of Mrs. Wehmeyer , who taught English at Olean High School for 42 years, is given to a graduating Olean senior with excellent writing skills who is recommended by the English faculty. The endowed scholarship was established by a group of Olean High alumni, all former students of Mrs. Wehmeyer.

Donations can be made to any of these scholarship funds at CRCF, 301 North Union Street, Suite 203, or online at

Established in 1994, the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation is growing good by connecting donors to the causes they care about most in the region. Grants from the foundation support many areas, including education, scholarships, health care, the arts, community development, human service, and youth development. To learn more, call (716) 301-CRCF (2723), email, or visit online at CRCF is also on Facebook ( and Twitter (@CattFoundation).

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