Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship Winners
Will DeLaney – Recipient of the 2020 Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship
For William DeLaney, this year’s winner of the Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship, helping others is an extension of his faith. When William was in high school, he and his mother volunteered at the 4th Tuesday Soup Kitchen in Spartanburg, South Carolina. While it is admirable for any person to break bread with those less fortunate, William was not content to do just that. During his senior year, he discovered that the soup kitchen would be closing due to lack of resources. He immediately stepped up and assumed control over all operations of the kitchen to make sure that would not happen.
That experience set William on an academic and career path that he intends to use to serve others. William graduated summa cum laude from Presbyterian College, where the motto is Dum Vivimus Servimus (“While We Live, We Serve”). He next headed to Duke Divinity School, where he is currently pursuing his master of divinity. William understands that academics without service is a hollow pursuit. As he sees it, one cannot understand the brokenness, sorrow, and injustices in the world if one has never personally engaged in the community.
Along the way, William has earned a number of awards and recognitions for his academic achievements and leadership. Now he adds to that list the Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship. The scholarship was created to recognize students who are making a real impact in the everyday lives of those in their communities. William certainly embodies these values, which are a natural outgrowth of his strong Christian faith. He explains, “I have been able to see and feel the grace of God molding me and providing a lamp unto my feet in these opportunities, revealing that my call to the church is rooted in serving my neighbors at home and abroad.”
Rosen Hagood is proud to award the 2020 Community Service Scholarship to William, whose commitment and compassion are beyond his years. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to William and look forward to continuing to see him use his talents to benefit those in need.
Swati Prashar – Recipient of the 2019 Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship
Extreme turnarounds do happen. They may take time and a lot of effort but they do happen. Such is the case of Swati Prashar who was born in India and who did a bachelor’s degree from a rural college in Rajasthan, but is now a resident of New York, United States and is pursuing graduate studies at Columbia University Teachers College, one of the most respected universities in the world.
Her journey from a small conservative town in India to an Ivy League University will pave the way for many women and girls in her hometown to dream big and work hard to accomplish big. A teacher at heart, Swati is building a career in Public Health to fulfill her committed to serving the underserved and underprivileged communities.
Over the years Swati has worn many hats; she has been a caretaker to the mentally disabled, has taught as a certified Science Teacher, has been an advisor to nonprofit education foundations, is a social entrepreneur supporting and designing social interventions for social ventures, has represented two nonprofits at the United Nations ECOSOC, has spoken about the vision of Martin Luther King and Gandhi at the Columbia University, and wrote a research proposal that aimed to impact women hygiene in a rural college in India which was selected for the highly competitive Annual Festival Showcase of Teachers College Columbia University.
As a co-founder of an initiative that supports grassroots community-based initiatives in South Asia. Swati has been involved in the launch of the first women-led and run ambulance system of Pakistan, has advised an award-winning nonprofit in India that teaches basic education to child trash pickers, and empowers women and girls from extremely poor communities by providing them employment opportunities.
Swati also has severe medical challenges and despite that, she is committed to serving others not only in South Asia but also in the US. As part of her education, she is designing a behavior-change focused self-care intervention for Lupus patients in the US. She will also be working with a US-based nonprofit in implementing a diabetes prevention telemedicine project.
Swati is grateful to the selection team and the Rosen Hagood Law Firm for selecting her for this scholarship.
Kingston Handley – Recipient of the 2018 Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship
Congratulations to Kingston Handley, the first recipient of the Rosen Hagood Community Service Scholarship. Kingston is a junior at the University of North Carolina – Charlotte. The scholarshipseeks to recognize students who have demonstrated their commitment to community service.
Along with being on the Dean’s List, carrying a full academic load with a dual major in Accounting and Criminal Justice, and engaging in an already-impressive list of extracurricular and service activities, Handley founded a mentoring club for boys called Passport to Manhood in partnership with local Boys and Girls Clubs. Handley describes the program as “a club that focuses on mentoring middle school boys that are at risk of dropping out of school and a way to help empower these boys with the understanding and the skills needed to grow into a well-rounded man.” Classes at the club incorporate discussions about a number of academic and social issues such as managing negative peer pressure, and also provide access to student tutors for tough assignments.
Handley said, “While teaching my Passport classes, I always told my students that I want to dictate my future and not have my future dictated to me. My goals were to inspire my middle school boys to reach their fullest potential, and for them to graduate from high school.”
Co-managing Member of the firm, Andrew Gowdown, commented that, “Kingston exemplifies the combination of community service and academic achievement the scholarship is designed to support. His achievements are incredibly impressive, and we’re proud to be able to support his education and his continued community service.”