Baker scholarships announced

Published 6:41 pm Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Lynell Oliver Baker Memorial Scholarship was awarded to three female graduates in the Suffolk Public Schools in 2016. Each girl received $2,000 paid directly to her university.

Brianna Lynch and Ariel Salerno of Lakeland High School and Jaclyn Mounie of Nansemond River High School were the recipients for 2016.

Brianna Lynch was an honor graduate and served as captain of the varsity basketball team in her senior year at Lakeland High School. She played varsity basketball for three years, varsity volleyball for two years and track. She was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the National Honor Society. At her church, she served as a child care provider. She participated as a student liaison to Suffolk Partnership for a Healthy Community. Lynch is attending Virginia Commonwealth University and plans to become an obstetrician.

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Ariel Salerno, an honor graduate, excelled academically, while competing on the swim team for four years, serving as captain in 2015-16. For four years, she was a member of the varsity field hockey, soccer and club field hockey teams at Lakeland High School. She was a member of the National Honor Society, The French Club and CHROME Club. She played violin in the orchestra for four years, earning all-city in 2012. As an art club member, she participated in numerous art exhibits. A member of the Girl Scouts since 2004, she received the Bronze, Silver and Gold awards. At her church, she participated in the church youth group and was a lay reader. Salerno is attending Randolph-Macon College and plans to be a teacher.

Jaclyn Mounie, also an honor graduate, played varsity softball for four years and varsity field hockey for four years at Nansemond River High School. She earned First Team All-Conference in both softball and field hockey, Conference Player of the Year in softball, First Team All-Regional, and First Team All-State in softball. She also was a member of the River Rowdies Club, National Beta Club and the Project Lead the Way Pre-Engineering Program. Mounie volunteered with Meals on Wheels, Special Olympics, March of Dimes and softball clinics. She is attending Towson University with the goal of becoming a physical therapist.

The Lynell Oliver Baker Memorial Scholarship is awarded each year to outstanding female graduates of the Suffolk public high schools for exceptional achievement in five areas: athletics, academics, school activities, church and community activities, and a 500-word essay that expresses goals, family support and financial need.

Lynell Oliver Baker, a 1989 Suffolk High School honor graduate, was planning to attend Campbell College. She died July 9, 1989 after suffering head trauma as a result of a fall from a horse. Her parents, Robert Baker and Linda Drummond, and friends and family established the scholarship in her memory to recognize outstanding female graduates in the Suffolk Public Schools who, like Lynell, are compassionate leaders in their school and community. Forty-four young women have been recognized since 1990.

Tax-deductible contributions to the scholarship fund may be made to: Lynell Oliver Baker Memorial Scholarship, Care of Mrs. Paige Hill, 309 Bosley Ave., Suffolk, VA 23434.