First it was Turquoise Baker in 2012, then Chyna Bacchus in 2015, and now Gerry P. in 2016. Each MMS student has been the eighth grade recipient of the prestigious Joe Lubar Scholarship, a four-year tuition scholarship to the University School of Milwaukee from the ninth through the twelfth grade.
In 2012, the Lubar Family established the Joseph Lubar Scholarship to honor the memory of their late son, Joe Lubar, who graduated from the University School in 2008. The scholarship recognizes one outstanding student from the greater Milwaukee area each year who has demonstrated academic potential, leadership, and excellence in extracurricular involvements and community service.
Applying for the scholarship requires a series of in-person interviews in front of a committee for which Gerry says, ‘I practiced over and over again with my mother.” He also wrote two essays, one in which Gerry described his day to day life and personal philosophy of success and a second detailing what positive attributes his enrollment will bring to the University School community. “My first essay was entitled, Growing Up Without A Father Teaches You More Than Your Average Child,” said Gerry. “Let’s just say that for the majority of the crucial developmental times of my youth, I had no father.”
Gerry further explained: “Growing up in a single-parent household means that the children like me are more likely to live a life in which they know more about money, or the lack of money, while they feel the stress of their parent who tries to make ends meet. This is tough for everyone, and growing up fatherless brings its set of difficulties for boys. Luckily, here at MMS, I have been fortunate to have dedicated and significant father figures in my life in Mr. Riggs, Mr. Swanson, and coach Mohr, who is especially determined to help me be a successful track and field athlete and a decent person.”
In his second essay, Gerry wrote about his commitment to hard work and humility. “I discussed how important academic success is to me and to my family as I will be the very first one to graduate from college when that happens in 2024.” Gerry’s ultimate goal is to earn a Ph.D. in marine biology from the University of Washington. “We know more about outer space than we do about the greatest depths of our oceans! How we treat our planet and the survival of endangered species in our oceans will forever be of interest to me.”
MMS is thrilled that the University School of Milwaukee has honored such an exceptional young man with the four year Joe Lubar High School Scholarship. His mother Malena is “beyond the moon happy” and adds, “Gerry’s success is directly hinged upon the generosity of MMS donors who have found it in their hearts to give to the MMS scholarship fund. Without their dedication to children like my son, we would never have imagined that an award like the Joe Lubar Scholarship could ever have been possible. It is life changing for Gerry and my family, and I credit MMS faculty and MMS families for his current triumphs and his promising future.”