Rotary awards scholarships

WEIRTON – The Rotary Club of Weirton recognized its four scholarship recipients during the club’s meeting at Williams Country Club Wednesday.

This year’s recipients were Alisandra Welch, from Weirton Madonna; Hannah Pauls, from Brooke; Cody Tropeck, from Oak Glen; and Stephen White, from Weir. Each has received $2,000 provided through the club’s fundraising efforts during the last year.

“All the events we hold throughout the year have come to fruition,” explained Club President George Charnie in helping to introduce the recent high school graduates.

Each of the scholarship recipients discussed some of their community service activities over the years, as well as their future plans.

White, discussed his years in the Boy Scouts – including providing more than 100 hours toward his Eagle Scout project building a range house for the Weirton Fraternal Order of Police – and several school clubs.

“Service has been a big part of my life,” he said, also noting his family’s tradition of military service.

White will attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and plans to enroll in the Naval ROTC program with the goal of his own military service.

Welch said while she was involved in many clubs and sports, she especially enjoyed her time with Madonna’s Interact Club, which is built on the same ideals as Rotary.

“We went out in the community and helped others,” she said.

Welch will be attending Carnegie Mellon University to major in chemical engineering.

Pauls expressed her appreciation to the club, saying serving others is important.

“I think it makes you a good person,” she said, noting her efforts to volunteer with her church, at a recreational center in South Carolina, and other tasks.

Pauls is attending West Liberty University to study dental hygiene.

Tropeck, who will attend the University of Charleston to major in pre-med with the goal of becoming an orthopedic surgeon, discussed his two years volunteering at the Orchards at Foxcrest, where he spends time with the residents of the area nursing facility.

He said while that service eventually led to him receiving a job there, the biggest reward is seeing the residents laugh and smile.

“That’s the greatest thing you can get,” he said.

Rotarian Steve Kladakis explained the club has provided the scholarships for local high school graduates for the last 25 years. He also encouraged the recipients to visit the Rotary Club and update them on their activities.

(Howell can be contacted at, and followed via Twitter @CHowellWDT)