News release from the Northwest Allen County Schools:
First annual Kris Thiele Memorial Scholarship Award given
A Carroll High School Senior Receives $1,500 For College
(May 29, 2014) – Kris Thiele (Tee-Lee) was a dedicated Maple Creek Middle School special education teacher. About four years ago, Thiele was diagnosed with cancer, but she resolved to fight the disease. Despite her extreme health challenges caused by a multi-year battle with cancer, she continued to focus on the needs of her students. Even while receiving hospice care, she communicated lesson plan ideas and effective strategies for her substitute and colleagues to consider as they worked to inspire her students. This past January, Thiele lost her battle with cancer. In partnership with Parkview Health, Northwest Allen County Schools worked to establish a scholarship in her name.
The Kris Thiele Memorial Scholarship honors its namesake for her dedication, passion, and commitment to serving the needs of Northwest Allen County Schools’ students. Parkview Health donated $1,500 to the scholarship in honor of Thiele to be used by a 2014 graduating senior to help offset the costs of college.
The first Kris Thiele Memorial Scholarship Award recipient is CHS senior Erin Carpenter. When her mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2012, Carpenter says she had to grow-up and mature quickly. “I wanted to show my parents that I was capable of doing what they wanted me to do,” said Carpenter, “be the kind young lady that they raised me to be and take up the responsibilities that my mother could not accomplish.”
Erin Carpenter plans to use the scholarship money to aid her in attending IPFW in the fall and major in Elementary Education while minoring in French. After graduating from IPFW and teaching for two years, Carpenter plans to apply for the Peace Corps to work in French speaking countries. “I wish to serve and be a helping hand to children in third world countries,” said Carpenter “by being a teacher, counselor, and a worker to guide the people towards a not-so-impoverished state and be a source of inspiration for pursuing an education.”
The scholarship committee found that Erin Carpenter embodied Kris’ spirit of commitment and actions towards serving others and her tenacity to triumph over life’s challenges in an effort to empower and inspire others to become reliable and passionate contributing members of the community. The committee also believes thatErin Carpenter is a person who demonstrates all of the aforementioned qualities and can use them to empower and inspire others to contribute to the community.
Parkview Health also donated another $1,500 to be used by an NACS educator for professional development. The educator scholarship recipient will be named in June.