Local students receive first Westfield Pride scholarship

Julia Maryanski (WHS) and Nathaniel Spiller (WTA); recipients of the first Westfield Pride Scholarship. (Photo courtesy of WSU)

WESTFIELD- Two local high school students are the inaugural recipients of the Westfield Pride Scholarship that was created in conjunction with Westfield’s 350th birthday celebrations.

Julia Maryanski and Nathaniel Spiller are the first two students to receive the scholarship since it was announced last November. Maryanski is a 2019 graduate of Westfield High School while Spiller is a 2019 graduate of Westfield Technical Academy.

Created by the Westfield State Foundation, the scholarship was a collaboration of the university and the three high schools in the city.

“Receiving the Westfield Pride Scholarship has shown me that my city cares about its students and has invested in our future.” Said Maryanski, “Now I will be able to pursue my dream of becoming a Physician’s Assistant and give back to my community. I’m incredibly grateful that I was chosen.”

Spiller was one of the students among the first graduating class from the WTA’s aviation program this year. He said that this scholarship will help him move forward with his dream of flying.

“This scholarship has allowed me to pursue my dream of obtaining a college degree.” said Spiller recently graduated from Westifeld Technical Academy’s aviation program. “The scholarship will also give me more flexibility when it comes to my flying locally.”

Westfield State University President Ramon S. Torrecilha speaking next to examples of the scarf and tie with the tartan pattern in November. (Photo by Peter Currier)

To fund The Westfield Pride Scholarship, the Westfield State Foundation, WSU, and the three high schools created a tartan to be sold that was a blended pattern of the school colors of the four institutions. There is blue, white and gold for the university, black and red for Westfield High School, purple and gold for Westfield Technical Academy, and green and gold for St. Mary’s High School.

The scholarship’s fund currently totals more than $50,000.

A tartan is a traditional pattern of colors usually seen on traditional Scottish or Irish clothing. When the tartan and scholarship was announced in November, it was being sold in the form of ties for $55 and scarves for $65. WSU President Ramon Torrecilha was sporting a custom vest with the pattern on it during the press conference in which the scholarship and tartan were announced.

“We are so pleased to partner with our City’s high schools and create opportunities for civic pride and pathways for local students to pursue a college education and experience close to home,” said Torrecilha.

During the announcement in November, Mayor Brian P. Sullivan and Torrecilha unveiled a certificate authenticating the Tartan pattern with the Scottish Register of Tartans in Edinburgh. For a Tartan to be registered, it must meet a certain set of requirements. In the Fall of 2017, the registry notified the university that all the requirements had been met.

Maryanski and Spiller’s classes begin next week on Sept. 4.

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