HILLSBOROUGH: Elks Scholarship Inspired by Flagtown Postmaster

Catherine Guerrera, an immigrant from Italy, grew up during the Depression without the use of her right arm or leg because of polio which limited her mobility, but not her spirit or will to achieve.

BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Somerville Elks Lodge #1068 encourages students dealing with physical and cognitive challenges to apply for the $2,000 Somerville Elks/Catherine Guerrera Memorial Scholarship.

Applicants should be graduating high school seniors who will begin their studies at an accredited college, university or technical school in the fall of 2017.

Students from Somerset and Hunterdon counties are eligible to apply.

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The $2,000 scholarship will be awarded based on a student’s outstanding academics, character, leadership and courage exhibited in overcoming obstacles that may have stood in their way.

Catherine Guerrera, for whom the scholarship is named, was an immigrant from Italy. She grew up during the Depression without the use of her right arm or leg because of polio which limited her mobility, but not her spirit and will to achieve.

She was appointed the first postmaster of Flagtown, a section of Hillsborough, after she wrote Eleanor Roosevelt asking why young women with disabilities found difficulty finding employment.

Funds for the scholarship are donated by members of the Guerrera family, with a matching contribution from the Somerville Elks Charitable Trust.

Midge Guerrera, Catherine's niece, said: “We are honored to be partners with the Somerville Elks in awarding this yearly scholarship for young people who are successfully completing their studies while adapting to the physical and cognitive challenges they may be facing. Aunt Catherine, would be very pleased with these student applicants and their courageous stories."

For an e-mail application, contact Lisa Marrero, Somerville Elks/Gurerrera Scholarship chairperson, at Completed application deadline is July 28. The winner will be announced late August .


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