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Scholarships Winners

PenSPRA would like to congratulate the winners of the Pennsylvania School Public Relations Association Scholarship!

We are pleased to announce the winners of the $1,000 scholarships for 2023-24 school year:

Emma Burke of Hershey High School

Emma Burke plans to pursue digital communications and will be continuing her education at Syracuse University in the fall of 2024. She looks forward to building her skills in graphic design, videography, and writing, and she is excited about both the creative and analytical aspects involved in a communications career. 

In her role as intern for Sarah Karpel, director of communications at Derry Township School District, Burke manages the Hershey High School Instagram page and has enjoyed the real-world opportunities of working with her mentor. 

“This hands-on learning experience has prepared me for life in no way a classroom could,” she said. 

Within her school community, Burke is an all-state musician and head drum major for the marching band, has been inducted into the National Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society, and is a member of the Random Acts of Kindness Club, Garden Club, and "Helping People, Period!" Club. She also works on the Artificial Intelligence Task Force to explore opportunities for using AI as a tool in school. Additionally, Burke tutors students in grades 6-12 in math, English, science, and music.

Julie Evanchak of Thomas Jefferson High School

Julie Evanchak decided a career in communications was in her future after taking an Introduction to Public Relations class during her junior year.

“The creativity, competitiveness, and problem solving coincided with my strengths in English, writing, and artwork. The social aspect of communicating with a diversity of people appealed to my outgoing, extroverted personality. It seemed like I had found a true career match,” she said. 

Evanchak sought out different opportunities to use and develop her communication skills, including serving as the public relations representative for the school’s French National Honors Society, writing musical reviews that were published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette as a Gene Kelly Critic, and interning for West Jefferson Hills School District Public Relations Coordinator Jeff Nelson.

Rounding out her high school experience, Evanchak is also the cheerleading captain, class vice president, and a member of the National Honor Society. She plans to attend Pennsylvania State University in the fall with a focus in public relations and advertising.

c/o Chester County Intermediate Unit

Downingtown, PA 19335

Phone: 484-237-5171

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