Five Geneva Scholarship Associates Named – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Five Geneva Scholarship Associates Named

GSA Reception-00154On June 4, the Geneva Scholarship Associates (GSA) honored five academically and financially deserving scholarship recipients as well as recognized all who have supported GSA as the organization celebrates its 50th anniversary.

Jacob Drennen ’22, Patrick FitzGerald ’22, Nathan Jacon ’22, Sofia Lawson ’22 and Tayah Payne ’22 joined more than 20 GSA scholars who are currently attending Hobart and William Smith Colleges for a ceremony in the L. Thomas Melly ’52 Lobby in the Gearan Center for the Performing Arts.

GSA began in 1968 when then-HWS President Albert E. Holland partnered with local business owners Neil Marvin, Leonard Kornet, Pete Albert, Professor Emeritus of Education Edward Cuony, John Parrott Sr. P’71, Don Pierrepont, Frank Pullano P’84, Castner Rapalee, Fred Reynolds, Robert “Bob” Saunderson, Wilbur Smith and Bill Whitwell Sr., to create a scholarship to support graduates from Geneva High School and the former DeSales High School to attend Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

“True to our original mission, Geneva Scholarship Associates continues to take pride in honoring and financially assisting some of Geneva’s best students who continue their education in their hometown at a nationally recognized liberal arts college,” said GSA Board President Rob Sollenne P’15. “While the cost of higher education continues to rise, GSA’s ability to help local students attend Hobart and William Smith is more important than ever; the investment in their education is a lifelong gift.”

Drennen completed the criminal justice program at the Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES and works at the Geneva Family YMCA. He is captain of the lacrosse team and a goalie on the hockey team.

FitzGerald is president and founder of the Young Investors Club, class treasurer and a member of the National Honor Society, Link Crew and Model UN. A varsity scholar athlete on the soccer, hockey and tennis teams, he volunteers for the Rotary Interact Club and Thrive to Survive.

A member of the Model UN, Rotary Interact Club and a youth soccer coach, Jacon is captain of the soccer team. A former Boys State participant, he is employed by the Geneva Recreation Complex Ice Rink and Turf and Geneva on the Lake. Jacon has also been awarded the HWS Trustee Scholarship.

Lawson is a member of the National Honor Society and participates in Finger Lakes Health’s (FLH) New Visions Health Therapy Sciences program. She volunteers for FLH’s Chat and Snack program and works at a local restaurant. Lawson is captain of the volleyball team and a member of the basketball team. Lawson is also the recipient of the Finger Lakes Scholarship.

Payne is a member of the National Honors Society, Leadership League of Women, Snowsports Club and Drama Club. She works as a lifeguard at the American Legion and the Geneva Family YMCA, and is the executive editor for a local author. She has volunteered for the local soup kitchen, Geneva Reads Book fest, Beverly Animal Shelter, the West Street School PAWS Assembly and ESOL Family Night.

“This year’s GSA scholars are an impressive group of young men and women. They are immensely talented and understand that a complete education starts with scholarship, but extends far beyond the borders of the classroom walls,” said Geneva High School Principal Greg Baker ’00.  “These students give generously of their time and talent to their community as evidenced by their extra-curricular involvements in clubs and activities. We are very proud that these leaders have chosen to stay in Geneva to continue their education and personal development at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.”

Since its inception 50 years ago, GSA has provided scholarship assistance to more than 200 Geneva youth. This past academic year, 23 students from Geneva attended the Colleges, receiving more than $1.3 million in financial aid and GSA funding.

The GSA Board is planning a 50th anniversary celebration in November to highlight GSA’s impact over the years, as well as continue to engage the community to support the fund. More information is forthcoming.

For more information, please contact Taylor Perry at (315) 781-3534 or