Amalia Bridson, East Rochester High School Class of 2019, was selected to receive the 2019 East Rochester Chamber of Commerce scholarship.
The $1,500 prize — funded by the chamber’s Holiday Trail raffles — is presented annually to an ERHS senior who demonstrates strong leadership skills, an understanding of the geographic dynamics between ER’s residential and commercial districts and a positive outlook on the economic advancement of ER as a thriving business community. Selection is also based on academic performance, extracurricular and community activities, two letters of recommendation and, this year, an essay on “Re-branding ER’s Image for 2020.”
As part of her application, she also made a short video promoting a hypothetical weekly TV show, “A Unique 1-Square-Mile Town,” in which a different ER business would be featured every episode.
Bridson plans to attend Niagara University in the academic exploratory program and pursue a career that involves working with children.
Throughout her years at ERHS, Bridson has been an active member of ER Connect, to help and support elementary students; and ER Crew, to guide and support incoming freshmen; the Gagashoan yearbook staff; and the University at Buffalo’s Bioinformatics program. She has also served as a class officer, been elected to the Spirit Week Court twice, volunteered in elementary classrooms and for Special Olympics, and given campus tours to new students. Away from school she’s been a Salvation Army bell-ringer, worked as a counselor and kitchen staff member at Camp Stella Maris and dressed as Elsa from “Frozen,” volunteered at area pre-schools and hospitals.
“Amalia is an incredibly sweet, endearing young woman, who has immense potential,” school counselor Kerry McMillan wrote in her letter of recommendation. “She’s outstanding when it comes to giving her time and energy to worthy causes — and academically, she challenges herself and works hard.
“She’s also been our guidance office’s go-to volunteer,” said McMillan. “Whenever the elementary school calls to request a High School mentor for a younger student, Amalia is our first choice.”