|Trib Photo/Sue Tone|
Prescott Valley Director of Public Works Norm Davis, center, awarded $500 scholarships from the American Public Works Association, Northern Arizona Chapter, to NAU/Yavapai students Elisa Whalen, left, and Anne Jack on Aug. 7.
Twelve students applied for a $1,000 scholarship through American Public Works Association, Northern Arizona Chapter, and two local students each received a certificate and a $500 check on Aug. 7 from Norm Davis, APWA Chapter chair and Town of Prescott Valley director of public works.
The scholarships went to Anne Jack and Elisa Whalen, both sophomores at Northern Arizona University/Yavapai campus.
Davis spoke to the two students and their classmates in a Community Development and Sustainability class about his career in public works and suggested they find a good mentor who enjoys his or her work.
Both Jack and Whalen are full-time students.
Whalen works part-time at the Humane Society, and said her scholarship money will go to pay tuition. She is looking to graduate early, in 2.5 years, with a bachelor's degree in Community Development and Sustainability and with a certificate through the Applied Human Behavior program.
"I hope to go into some sector of urban planning with emphasis in historic preservation," Whalen said, adding that pathways and trailways are another avenue she'd like to pursue.
"Let's take the old and preserve what we have - that's the sustainability part - or rebuild in a greener way," she said.
Whalen has lived in Prescott for nearly four years, has a 6-year-old son, and appreciates her parents who also reside in Prescott.
Jack is looking at earning a double major in Community Development and Sustainability and Applied Human Behavior, after which she will pursue a law degree with an emphasis in sustainability or community development. She, too, will use her scholarship money to help pay for tuition and books.
"Three years is a long time, and every little bit helps," she said.
Jack graduated from Prescott High School, is married with two daughters, and has worked fulltime as a paralegal for 11 years. She credits her boss, Alex Vakula, for giving her the flexibility she needs to attend classes while still working her 40 hours per week.
"I'm trying not to take out loans. I'm trying not to go into debt," she said.
NAU/Yavapai Associate Director Nancy Jensen said the NAU/Yavapai campus offers four bachelor degree programs that can be completed in three years.
"Classes are offered in a blended format - offering the best of in-classroom and online learning models, with tuition rates that are the lowest in the state: $5,345 for the 2014-2015 academic year," Jensen said.