Local Freemasons Award $66k in Scholarships to Local Graduates

Cera Bettencout, first recipient of the James B. Giannatsis Scholarship, appears with James Giannatsis and his family. (Courtesy photograph.)

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Three local Freemason organizations awarded $66,000 in scholarships last Monday to 27 graduating students pursuing a college degree or technical certificate.

Haverhill’s Saggahew Lodge Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Newburyport Commandery 3 and the Valley of the Merrimack Scottish Rite presented scholarships to students, all of whom are either children or grandchildren of Freemasons.

Cera Bettencourt, who will be attending Merrimack College, received scholarships from all three organizations. She is also the first person to receive the James B Giannatsis Scholarship from family of Giannatsis for her essay on “What It Means to Me to Be an American.”

Receiving scholarships from both Saggahew Lodge and Newburyport Commandery 3 are Audrey and Olivia Sevigny, who will both attend Springfield College; Samantha Patterson, Fitchburg State University; Paige and Jacob Koterba, University of Vermont and University of Connecticut respectively; Chelsey Burns, Southern New Hampshire University; Nathaniel Potter, Florida Atlantic University; Aiden Dowd, University of New Hampshire; and Christopher Guarino, Northern Essex Community College.

Emily Reid, UMass Amherst, and Conor and Jillian Wong, Western Governors University and UMass Medical School respectively, received scholarships from Saggahew Lodge and Valley of the Merrimack Scottish Rite.

Cailyn and Colin Scharneck, University of South Carolina and University of New Hampshire respectively; Alexander Reid, University of New Hampshire; Emma Chute, Amherst College; Alexis Koufos, Clark University; Emma Bates, Umass Amherst; Sydney Griffen, Northern Essex Community College; Felecia Lowes, Northern Essex Community College; Elizabeth Faulkner, University of Southern California; and Lillian Lefcourt, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing, all received scholarships from Saggahew Lodge.

Isabelle Sevigny, Western New England University; Olivia Guagliano, Fairfield University; Nicolas Stemkoski, Rochester Institute of Technology; and Kasey Favor, Emmanuel College; received scholarships from Newburyport Commandery 3.

The three organizations describe themselves as “local Masonic organizations comprised largely of Merrimack Valley residents belonging to a society dedicated to the principle of ‘making good men better’ by providing opportunities for fellowship, charity, education and leadership, while creating friendship and understanding between men without regard to nationality, religion, race, background or opinion.”

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