March 2, 2024

Four Seniors Get Scholarships From SMECO


Four high school seniors have been awarded scholarships from Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative.

SMECO scholarships are based on the applicants’ financial need, scholastic achievement, and involvement in the school and community. Since 1993, SMECO has awarded scholarships to 108 students. Each of the following students will receive a $1,500 college scholarship: Alyssa Dorsey, Samuel Guzzone, William Runyon, and Andrew Tolarski.

Alyssa Dorsey is a graduate of Chopticon High School in St. Mary’s County. She will attend the College of Southern Maryland to pursue a career in nursing. She is an active volunteer with the rescue squads in Hollywood and Mechanicsville. Through the Academy of Health Professions at the Dr. James A. Forrest Career and Technology Center, Ms. Dorsey has worked to earn her Certified Nursing Assistant certificate. She also competed in Skills USA and earned first place at a regional competition.

Ms. Dorsey also completed an internship in the emergency room at MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital. Chopticon High School counselor Cara Grysko said, “Alyssa’s commitment and dedication of her time to her school and community illustrate her selflessness and admirable traits. With her desire to succeed, self-motivation, and academic focus, any school or work organization would be honored to have her as part of their team.”

Ms. Dorsey is the daughter of Scott Allen Dorsey of Mechanicsville.

Samuel Guzzone is the son of Amy and Darren Guzzone of Indian Head and a graduate of Henry E. Lackey High School in Charles County. Mr. Guzzone plans to become a mechanical engineer. An accomplished athlete and musician, he played both soccer and tennis at Lackey, plus he played in the symphonic band and jazz band. He is also the drummer in the Flippin’ Eyelids, a band he created with his brothers.

Mr. Guzzone is also active in the Mathematics Engineering Science Accomplishment club, the National Honor Society, 4H, It’s Academic, and the Chess Club. He has volunteered with the Appalachian Service Project and Farming4Hunger.

Laura Buzzell, the chair of the mathematics department at Lackey, said: “Samuel is very talented in math and science, and he is one of the most well-rounded students that I have ever taught. He leads by example and encourages his teammates and colleagues to work harder than they ever have before. Samuel has been extremely successful in all of his endeavors.”

William Runyon is a graduate of Thomas Stone High School in Charles County. He plans to attend Georgia State University and pursue a career as an attorney. Mr. Runyon is a musician and has played violin since he was in elementary school.

He was a member of the All-County Orchestra and played for the musical “Beauty and the Beast” at Thomas Stone. He also plays guitar and participated in the musical “All Shook Up” at Stone. As a student of Aikido, a Japanese martial art that promotes peace and cooperation, and Iaido, which relies heavily on focus and patience, Mr. Runyon said, “I can apply the lessons in focus, patience, and discipline in my school environment, as well as in my life in general.”

Mr. Runyon is the son of Lea Sadler of Waldorf.

Andrew Tolarski is a graduate of Leonardtown High School in St. Mary’s County. He plans to attend the University of Maryland and major in music education, eventually becoming a music teacher. Mr. Tolarski plays the viola and piano and sings.

Mr. Tolarski said, “My goal is to be a teacher, not only to instruct, but to help people grow. I want to be able to look back at what I have done and see the results as contributing to the growth and happiness of other human beings.” He is a member of the International Thespian Society and was student conductor of two choirs for the Maryland All-State Chorus. He is a choir section lead at Lexington Park United Methodist Church, a member of the community choir Musica, and a volunteer and employee at Greenwell State Park, where he helps with summer camp.

Mr. Tolarski is the son of Laura Tolarski of Hollywood.

SMECO provides scholarships to local students who excel in their endeavors and who show promise in their chosen field of study.

To learn more about SMECO, please visit their Leader member page.

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