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Innovation & Growth Initiative: Montgomery County Benchmark
Learn about Abington's Next Century. To access a white paper that compares Abington to the rest of Montgomery County, click here >
2011 Scholarship Recipient
The recipient of one of two scholarships in 2011 is an energetic and enthusiastic young woman, epitomizes the vision of promise and hope for our future through the work of committed young people willing to engage in social action and giving back to community.
Taylor’s serious and responsible work ethic has enabled her to have a large impact on her community, both locally and broader. Her persistence and focus have enabled her to address a varied array of issues that she feels would make the world a better place. She is able to set and achieve goals through her productive life style, applying her determination to her many interests to get things done.
The community service activity that Taylor is most proud of and that means the most to her is her involvement with the Philadelphia Teens for the Cure, a branch of the Susan G. Komen Cancer Foundation. Serving on the Executive Board and in charge of fund raising, Taylor assisted Teens for the Cure to raise over $60,000, which was designated for cancer research. Taylor designed, made and sold bracelets as a fund-raiser, and also created flyers and sold tickets for the Teens for the Cure Fashion Show, during which she was one of the models.
Ecologically aware, Taylor was very involved in creating and sustaining a once-polluted area of land in her neighborhood into a thriving and lush Bird Sanctuary, which has had the effect of improving the look and feel of the area and raising residents’ pride in their environment. She was instrumental in spreading the word about the project among area residents through the flyers she developed, helping to raise funds for the project and teaching computer skills to the adults involved. Most recently, she has been attending to the 18+ bird feeders, making sure that the birds who visit the sanctuary are well fed. She has helped with specific projects for the Sanctuary, organizing groups of other teens to support the effort and leading young children in a project to paint and beautify and individualize the bird feeders.
Another environmental issue which Taylor has embraced is the non-profit Community Sustainable Agricultural group in Elkins Park, a local agricultural cooperative organized through her synagogue. CSA buys fresh produce and other goods from local farmers and then distributes it to people who buy shares in the cooperative. Taylor has embraced this effort as a way to encourage healthy eating and life style and to support our local farmers. She has helped with the organizing and distributing of the food as well as with specific events for CSA.
In addition, Taylor has created numerous hand-made quilts which were donated to St. Christopher’s Hospital in Philadelphia. When children are admitted into the hospital, they receive a quilt which becomes theirs and helps them to feel more comfortable, safe and cared-for.
Another of Taylor’s passions is to support the Crones and Colitis Foundation, for which she organized a group of other teens to participate in a fund-raising walk which earned close to $1000 for research into the diseases. Additionally, Taylor is working towards a teaching certificate at Gratz College to become a Hebrew school teacher and is currently student teaching there.
One of Taylor’s mentors has said of her that “she is one of the most impressive young adults I have ever met. She has great values, is respected by peers and elders, is inquisitive, responds well to constructive criticism, is optimistic, kind, delightful and an inspiration to everyone who knows her.” Taylor understands that through community service, not only is she making a positive difference in her world, but she is also personally gaining and growing through the experience, saying that she is a “more self-reliant, confident, and diligent person with a new-gained appreciation for the power of helping others.”
Taylor is an independent young woman with a ‘can-do’ and resilient attitude. She is admired for being respectful and extremely compassionate, but also for her willingness to not take ‘no’ for an answer and to question conventional wisdom. She has benefited from the help and support of caring people, and she is unrelenting in her desire to ‘pay it forward.’
Taylor has been recognized for her service to the community by being only one of a very few students certified as a gold medalist for the United States Congressional Award. She has also been inducted into the National Honor Society.
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