Happy New Year! No, That’s No April Fools

Left to right, top to bottom: Clarice Sullivan, Patricia Fina Weaver, Patty Zatkin, and Sandi Beecher

Left to right, top to bottom: Clarice Sullivan, Patricia Fina Weaver, Patty Zatkin, and Sandi Beecher

Deb Melton

A year can be marked many ways. A calendar year begins on Jan. 1, but the Scholarship Committee for The Women of Quail Creek (TWOQC) measures their year beginning in April with the awarding of new scholarships. So, it seems fitting to sum up the year by reporting what has happened with the scholarship winners of 2020. To find out, we asked their mentors.

Patricia Fina Weaver heads up the mentoring team and assigns mentors to our scholarship winners. The mentors keep in touch with each woman via email, text, phone calls, and, in the past, friendly chats over lunch or coffee.

Patricia has been Marisa Acosta’s mentor for two years. Marisa is now ready to complete her education degree and will be a certified teacher in Arizona later this spring. She has been teaching fifth grade at San Xavier Elementary School for the past three years. When asked what this scholarship has meant to her, Marisa said, “The scholarship has helped me become more empowered to make a difference and teach our next generation the value of having an education and pursuing careers.”

Another of Patricia’s mentees is Jasmine Spear, a married mother of three who is working toward becoming a nurse practitioner. Like so many women during this past year, Jasmine has had the challenge of homeschooling her children while pursuing her own career goals. When asked what the scholarship has meant, she said this, “I’ve been touched by the encouragement and moral support I’ve received. It feels great to know that I have numerous successful women cheering me on and willing to help me in any way they can. The Women of Quail Creek goes above and beyond to help me succeed from mentoring and networking to celebrating my successes. It’s been an honor to be the recipient of this scholarship.”

Clarice Sullivan, a retired nurse, spent most of her career as a psych nurse and administrator. She mentors Harley Plasencio, who is finishing her associate degree this year. When asked about her experience working with Harley, Clarice said, “Most of my mentoring activity has been support, encouragement, and applause, not that Harley needs much from me.” We are immensely proud of Harley and know that she will make a fine nurse.

Patty Zatkin has been mentoring April Escarsega, who is working toward a certification as a logistics manager for the Sahuarita Food Bank. April’s self-esteem and her abilities have grown during the past year as a result of her education and the vote of confidence from TWOQC.

Sandi Beecher mentors Haley Duncan, a freshman at Pima Community College. While this online year has been challenging, Haley reports that her professors have been great, and her grades are good.

These scholarships make a tremendous difference in the lives of the women who receive them. We are grateful to the entire Quail Creek community for supporting these scholarships. A video of the 2020 winners can be found at www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKCNAf3_wBQ. Happy New Year!