In 2007, the Law Foundation of Berks County created a scholarship to encourage students to pursue careers in criminal justice, the legal profession or in other fields. Eligible students must meet the following criteria:
1. Rising junior majoring in criminal justice or in another related major
2. Must have attended and graduated from a Berks County High School
3. Must have a minimum 3.0 grade point average in the major and overall must maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average for renewal their senior year
Pictured below are the 2011 recipients, Ryan Hermany and Jessica Beisswanger, along with Mr. Terry D. Weiler, JD, President of the Law Foundation of Berks County.
Alvernia University, under the sponsorship of the Bernardine Sisters of St. Francis, provides its students with quality Franciscan liberal arts education with career and professional opportunities. The University is dedicated to the Franciscan values and to growth consistent with prudent fiscal management. As part of this commitment to quality education, Alvernia University has established the Larrie Summer Thomas Memorial Scholarship Fund.
The Fund was established by Nicholas Donahue in honor of Larrie Summer Thomas, to encourage students to pursue careers in the field of Criminal Justice.
This Scholarship fund honors the memory of Larrie Summer Thomas, a Criminal Justice alumna from Alvernia University.
While many students struggled to get through the rigors of the Criminal Justice program at Alvernia, few endured the battle Larrie fought and ultimately lost - and that was her fight with colon cancer. She was diagnosed at the age of 19 and she courageously attended classes while undergoing cancer treatments. Nick Donahue, a fellow alum, established this fund because he shared many classes with her and was continuously amazed by her optimistic attitude and great sense of humor.
After graduation, Larrie worked at the Berks County Youth Detention Center. Her kindness and good spirit affected those around her. She often received letters from students after they moved on from the detention center. It meant the world to her to get updates and to know that she made a difference in the lives of these children.
Over the next few years, she continued to undergo cancer treatments, sometimes having periods of remission lasting months. Time after time she fought over and over again, never giving up, and doing it always with a positive attitude. In January of 2007, the cancer was so extensive the Larrie was given only three months to live. She passed away two weeks later in February at the age of 24.
Nick began this scholarship to keep the memory of Larrie Summer Thomas alive and to honor her tenacious, yet loving spirit that represents so many who enter into the Criminal Justice field. She left this world too soon. Nick would like nothing more than to educate future generations about the courage and determination of his friend and classmate.
1. Applicants must be admitted to the University pursuant to admission standards for full-time study.
2. Eligible applicants will be chosen by the Criminal Justice Department with final approval from the Criminal Justice Chairperson and Office of Student Financial
3. The applicant must be a traditional undergraduate student majoring in Criminal Justice.
4. The applicant must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or greater.
5. The scholarship amount will vary but will be based on tuition and fees minus any federal, state and institutional grants, not to exceed $1,000 per semester.
6. Eligible students should have demonstrated financial need as determined by the Office of Student Financial Planning.
Pictured below are the 2011 recipients of the Larrie Summer Thomas Scholarship, Lorena Rivera and Sean Brett, along with Edgar Hartung, Criminal Justice Department Chair.