G ranville, N.Y., native Sydney Dunham doesn’t know what to expect when she arrives at SUNY Plattsburgh as a freshman next fall.
But she does know that her Paula and Michael Freed Scholarship will help her focus on her studies in psychology without having to worry so much about funding them.
“Having money put toward my education is the best investment I could make,” Dunham. “I hope to make it through college with as few loans as possible, and I believe this scholarship will help me with that.”
The Paula and Michael Freed Scholarship awards a total of $10,000 annually to Granville Central Junior/Senior High School graduates who are attending SUNY Plattsburgh. To qualify for the award, students must demonstrate financial need and academic merit.
Dunham says she chose the psychology program at Plattsburgh because it offers so much variation within the discipline, and that will allow her to follow her interests.
Meanwhile, she said, “I believe studying psychology will influence the way I interact with friends and classmates because it will give me an original view and understanding of the world and the people in it.”
Dunham also appreciates that SUNY Plattsburgh isn’t too far from home.
For Michael and Paula Freed, the two Granville natives who graduated from the college in 1979 and 1980 respectively, their reason for setting up a scholarship was also close to home.
“Given the economy, we just felt that this was the best way we could continue to reinvest in our hometown and, at the same time, help to make education affordable at a school that we believe in,” said Michael, now president and CEO of Spectrum Priority Health.
SUNY Plattsburgh students Tyler Guest, Krystle Morey, Anna Rogoza and Bria Terrio, all of Granville, will also continue to benefit from the Freed Scholarship next year. Last year’s freshman recipients of the scholarship, sisters and education majors Jennifer and Stephanie Boutin of Middle Granville, say the scholarships are a big financial help to their family.
As for Dunham, she is grateful that the SUNY Plattsburgh alumni would keep the small town in mind when designating a scholarship to support her and other local SUNY Plattsburgh students.
“I admire that the Freed family is so connected to where they came from and willing to give back to our little home town,” she adds. “I hope someday I can follow in their footsteps and show my support for home as well.”