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Oneonta Club Awards Scholarships, Grants

With another school year winding down, The Oneonta Club Foundation on Monday presented its Philip V. Swan Scholarships at its 49th annual banquet, awarding $30,000 in scholarships to deserving students and $2,000 in grants to teachers.
About 100 club members, South Pasadena Unified School District Board of Education members, Superintendent Geoff Yantz, Mayor Evelyn Zneimer, awardees with their families, and other guests joined the foundation for the special evening.
Hosted by Oneonta Club board member and South Pasadena High School alumnus Tom Rogers, the festivities began by featuring retiring conductor Howard Crawford, who led the SPHS Jazz Band during dinner. Afterward, the group sang a few songs, as is the club’s tradition, including a rousing rendition of the SPHS alma mater, when this year’s scholarship recipients were joined on stage by the nearly 30 SPHS alumni from the club.
Foundation President Dean Serwin welcomed everyone, saying “The Oneonta Club Foundation seeks out interesting and dedicated students, providing them and their families with tuition assistance as they take the first steps to their next chapter.”
Serwin thanked those in attendance, including the club, foundation board, school board members and the local government officials that presented certificates honoring the students and the teachers feted at the ceremony.
This year, the club honored four students instead of the usual three because one of the honorees plans to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point — which doesn’t charge tuition — allowing for a fourth spot, Serwin noted.
The student awardees are Truman Lindenthaler, Sawyer Fox, Mia Ramos and Danica Stirling.
Foundation liaison Carl von Bibra presented this year’s Teachers of the Year with a commemorative plaque and a grant for $1,000 in recognition of their outstanding service. From the elementary schools, SPUSD selected Marengo Elementary first-grade Mandarin dual immersion teacher Judy Ho. Ho was introduced by incoming principal and longtime Marengo teacher Noelle Fong, who lauded “Judy’s passion for teaching Mandarin to little ones,” and how she spends extra time working with their families.
SPHS Principal John Eldred selected art teacher Aimee Levie-Hultman, now in her 20th year at the school. Eldred praised Levie-Hultman’s talent and her popularity with students, remarking, “I could fill her classes all day long there is so much demand.”
Oneonta Club President Glenn Crawford said the event turned into a wonderful evening: “What a grand night … So much prospect, so much anticipation, so much hope. The Oneonta Club is thrilled to host the foundation and participate in starting these young scholars on their way to the next big step in life.”
Serwin concluded the evening by presenting past foundation president, William J. Cullinane, with a trophy commemorating his more-than a decade of guidance.
The Oneonta Club Foundation was created in 1975 as a nonprofit through the vision of first president Philip V. Swan. Swan’s foresight, along with that of his good friend Ross MacMichael, and the wise stewardship of Bill Cullinane created a lasting legacy in South Pasadena have allowed The Oneonta Club Foundation to present more than $600,000 in scholarships to date.
Through these scholarships and teacher grants, The Oneonta Club and The Oneonta Foundation both remain in service to the youth and teachers of South Pasadena and support their growth into the leaders of tomorrow.

Lindenthaler plans to attend UC Irvine this fall to study engineering. With a passion for many things other than just academics at which he excels, Lindenthaler is on the school’s origami club, volunteers with the local theater troop Upstage, and is passionate about Formula 1 and how it relates to engineering.
Fox is set to attend West Point this fall where the athleticism and dedication he demonstrated on the football field will serve him well. His commitment to volunteer service was seen in efforts including the “snuggle a senior” program, a drive to gather blankets for seniors in need, which he spearheaded.
Ramos plans to head east to Boston College this fall to pursue a major in psychology and human development, where she hopes to find time to again become involved with research projects. Aside from rigorous studies, Ramos combined her dedication to volleyball and her support for those with mental illness into a very interesting Girl Scout Gold Award project.
Stirling will head to Claremont McKenna College in the fall to pursue veterinary studies. Her many interests abound, including sports, community, working with the homeless and, of course, animals.

First published in the May 17 print issue of the South Pasadena Review.

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