It is very inspiring to come across a young person who has the insight and fortitude to realize that adversity can become a source of strength. To be able to help such a student achieve their dreams is incredibly rewarding.

I’m very proud to announce that Pamela Miller, a senior at Southside High School in Elmira, is a winner of the ZiffLaw Overcoming Adversity Scholarship. Pamela will receive $1,000 to pursue her plans to study international relations and Spanish.

This scholarship is administered by the Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes and awarded to a student attending high school in Chemung County, or at Corning East or West, Waverly, Sayre or Athens high schools. Financial need is strongly considered, but the primary criteria is we look to help a student who overcame some adversity and prevailed through hard work and perseverance.

Pamela certainly qualifies. She contributed a personal essay describing a family tragedy, her father’s suicide, that would leave any child wondering, “Why did this happen to my family?”

“I honestly feel that no one should have to endure what my family and I have gone through…” she writes. “… However, as horrible as some of my life’s experiences have been, I try to extract some good out of them. I realize that the family I do have I must cherish with all my heart and we continue to grow closer every day.”

Pamela is in the top 15 percent of her class and a member of the varsity cheerleading and track teams; Key Club, National Honor Society and History Club. She is also Secretary of Concert Choir and a Youth Rotary Scholar.

There is another winner this year: Alison Bixby, a student at Thomas Edison High School in Elmira. I’ll post another entry telling more about Alison.

Both winners deserve recognition for their ability to excel and not dwell on the past.

A description of the ZiffLaw Overcoming Adversity Scholarship and an application is available on the Community Foundation website. If you know of a deserving student, please encourage him or her to apply for next year’s scholarship.

Thanks for reading,
James B. Reed, Esq.
Personal Injury & Malpractice Attorney
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William St., Elmira, NY 14902
Tel. (607) 733-8866 Fax. (607) 732-6062
Toll Free 1-800-943-3529