The Leo Volz Scholarship winner was formally announced and approved at the Oakdale Joint Unified School District Board of Trustees at the April 23 regular meeting. The Leo Volz Scholarship is a 100-percent paid tuition award to any accredited four-year university and is awarded to a well-rounded student who must meet a number of selection criteria.
The trustees unanimously approved awarding Oakdale High School senior Paul Perrone, who is also student representative to the board, as this year’s Leo Volz Scholarship winner. Perrone, who is a voting member of the Board of Trustees, abstained from the vote to approve his selection.
Perrone plans to major in economics at Claremont McKenna College, a private university in Southern California, or there is also a possibility of attending Yale. He admitted to getting a little teary-eyed when he was called into the school office and was notified of his selection for the scholarship.
“It means a lot to me and my family to be able to finance my education,” he said. “I’m incredibly fortunate to have been a part of this … I want to say thank you. I plan not to let you down and use the money well.”
Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum Barbara Shook reported that there were 33 students who were qualified for the coveted award and 17 who applied.
Trustee Bill Dyer is a citizen member of the Leo Volz committee and said that the process for selection is well-planned and that the committee doesn’t know the names or personalities of the students until interview time. Prior to the interview, they are separately ranked by each member of the committee, which then convenes to figure out which applicants will advance in the process.
“After all these years it’s amazing how this thing sifts out,” Dyer said. “It’s pretty thorough, very non-biased … The people who receive it, it’s well-deserved.”
Along with his post on the school board, Perrone is also this year’s top point-earning member of the county champion OHS Academic Decathlon team, a member of the Science Olympiad team and Model UN team, plays on the varsity tennis team, is involved in student leadership, was Homecoming King, is Interact Club president, involved in other clubs on campus, has played in the school band, community theater, and is also involved with the 4-H international exchange program.
In other business, while no action was taken in closed session, board president Mike Tozzi reported that there was discussion in the session about the Oakdale High School football field. OJUSD Superintendent Marc Malone said that the OHS artificial turf has had UV degradation to the colored areas of the field. The field is in year six of an eight-year warranty and the FieldTurf company will replace the damaged areas at no cost to the district. The approximately $1 million OHS football field stadium upgrade was paid for and performed by individuals and business members of the Oakdale community.
The trustees also recognized teacher Jim Greaves for his 50 years in education. Alternative Education Principal Dennis Hitch presented Greaves with a large framed certificate resolution from the California legislature. County Superintendent Tom Changnon also honored Greaves with a framed certificate. Following comments from the administrators and some board members, Greaves received a standing ovation from the audience.
The next regular meeting of the OJUSD Board of Trustees will be at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, May 14 at the OJUSD Technology and Staff Development Center, Building B, 331 Hinkley Ave., Oakdale.