The Edwards Officers Spouses Club honored five Desert Junior-Senior High School seniors at their annual scholarship banquet April 16 at Club Muroc.
Those students and scholarship recipients were Sabrina Belen, Miranda Brater, Bryce Benlian, Julia Segebarth and Brandon Snyder. The scholarships, presented by Brig. Gen. Michael T. Brewer, 412th Test Wing commander, had a combined total of $10,000.
The students were joined by their families, members of the EOSC, Brewer and wife Debbie, and Maj. Gen. Arnold Bunch Jr., Air Force Test Center commander, with his wife Caroline.
The money for the scholarships is raised by EOSC volunteer efforts throughout the year. Some of those efforts include running the Thrift Store and offering a holiday gift wrapping booth.
Sabrina Belen received the highest scholarship in the amount of $3,250. Belen, has spent the last four years of high school focused on her academics, athletics and volunteer service. She has participated in the Kern County Science Fair all four years and made it the State Science Fair twice. She has also played on the DHS Varsity Tennis team and was named Most Valuable Player two of those four years. Her athletic and academic achievements were recognized by the United States Army Reserve with the National Scholar and Athlete Award. During her high school career, she has accumulated over 370 hours of community service and has been recognized by the California State Senate as a Future Leader in the Antelope Valley. After graduation, Belen plans to study Biology at UCLA.
Miranda Brater received $2,250 in scholarship money which she plans to invest towards a nursing degree starting at Cerro Coso Community College. During this school year, Brater has served as captain of the volleyball and softball teams and has acted as the National Honor Society treasurer at DHS. She has also been actively involved in Junior ROTC, serving as the Wing Commander and has been named the Outstanding Cadet. When she is not at school, Brater serves her church, singing in the choir and volunteering as a childcare worker in the nursery. In previous years, she has worked at Forest Home as a child care assistant for a family camp and this summer she will work as a camp counselor at Camp Sacandaga, a Bible camp in New York.
The other scholarship recipients received $1,500 each to pursue their college plans.
Bryce Benlian will graduate from DHS as a valedictorian at the end of this school year. He then plans to attend California Baptist University in Riverside, Calif., in the fall where he will major in software engineering and compete on the wrestling team. Benlian has been recognized by the Antelope Valley Press as a Future Leader and he currently serves as president of the California Scholarship Federation at Desert High. He was a master qualifier in wrestling and a Boys State Delegate. Someday, Benlian would like to open his own programming business creating software.
Julia Segebarth, who was unable to attend the awards banquet, was represented by her father, Chief Master Sgt. James Segebarth, 412th Security Forces Squadron. During high school, she has participated in the National Honor Society and is vice president of the California Scholarship Federation at DHS. Julia has aided younger students as a middle school tutor and, in the fall, plans to attend Hawkeye Community College in Waterloo, Iowa. After two years, she plans transfer to Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa, where she will major in education. Last fall, Segebarth served as a teacher’s aid for a Branch Elementary School instructor and as a future teacher, she helps bring anti-bullying campaigns to schools. She participates in Red Cross blood drives and last year she led an effort to gather letters from classmates to send to deployed military members in Afghanistan for Christmas.
Brandon Snyder plans to attend San Diego State University in the fall and pursue a degree in aerospace engineering. Snyder has earned a spot at graduation as a valedictorian with an overall grade point average over 4.0 all four years in high school. He is also captain of the varsity soccer team and started all four years. In addition to tutoring other students in Algebra, Snyder volunteers at Adopt-a-Pet and served at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Festival.