Surprise scholarship announcement gives boost to Steel Valley High School seniors

May 1 was “college decision day,” when high school seniors had to decide which school to attend. Now, they’re trying to figure out how to pay for it. Fortunately, s surprise scholarship announcement gave a lot of kids a big boost toward that.

At a scholarship ceremony on May 5, seniors from Steel Valley High School celebrated, as they are on the verge of starting their future.

Richard Bazzy, who graduated from Steel Valley High School and went on to own Shults Ford car dealerships, remembers how that felt. He loves reading the applications for the scholarship he started: “They’re unfulfilled dreams with a promise of a wonderful future ahead of them,” Bazzy says.

“Learning and seeing these wonderful kids that apply and understanding that they have worked hard,” Bazzy says, leaves him inspired by the students.

When the scholarship was created, it was supposed to go to one student. But Bazzy couldn’t say “no” and decided to give each of the 19 kids who applied $5,000.

“I’m incredibly grateful,” said Sydney McLauglin, one of the scholarship recipients. She’s going to college for veterinary medicine. “It’s amazing.”

And Riley Furrick, who’s going to college for engineering said, “I’m very stressed about how to pay for college. I have some financial aid, but not a full ride. My parents can’t pay for the whole thing and that’s fine, but to receive so much — this is so much less stressful… This is life-changing… not just for me but for everyone here.”

Last year, Bazzy also planned to give out one scholarship but gave it to all 11 students who applied. He hopes his gift will inspire the kids to do their best in college and to give back when they grow up, too.