NEW ORLEANS (FWAA) – Alaina Martens, a senior
at Papillion-La Vista High School in Papillion, Neb., was named
Monday as the 15th winner of the Volney Meece Scholarship.
The scholarship is awarded annually by the Football Writers
Association of America and named for the late Volney Meece.
Meece served 22 years as the FWAA’s executive director and was the
organization’s president in 1971.
The scholarship is a $1,000 annual grant for four years. It is
given to a deserving son or daughter of an FWAA member.
The 17-year-old Martens is the daughter of long-time FWAA member
Lee Barfknecht of the Omaha World-Herald.
Alaina's impressive academic record at Papillion-La Vista High
School includes membership in the National Honor Society and a fixture
on the school's Honor Roll all four years. On a 4.0 scale, Alaina
accumulated a 4.5 weighted GPA while taking several advanced placement
In addition to her academic achievements, Alaina has been involved
in numerous extracurricular projects. Some of her co-curricular
activities include membership on the school's dance team, student
council and show choir. She has also been active in her church,
served on mission trips, worked with the elderly, was a volunteer
for Kids Against Hunger and the Salvation Army and received the
Lions Club Leo Gold Volunteer Service Award.
David Herbener, who taught Alaina for two years in AP psychology,
wrote in his letter of recommendation: "Alaina is one of the top
students that I have had the pleasure of teaching in my 25-year
career. She is motivated, displays numerous talents, is likable,
self-disciplined and trustworthy. She will be a tremendous asset
to any university and I recommend her as highly as possible."
Scheduled to graduate in May, Alaina plans to attend Texas Christian
University, where she will study psychology.
Previous Meece Scholarship winners include: Brett Goering, Topeka,
Kan.; Kelly Brooks, Denver, Colo.; James Butz, Schaumberg, Ill.;
Sara Barnhart, Atlanta, Ga.; Patrick Davis, Coventry, Conn.; Jacqueline
O'Toole, Gaithersburg, Md.; Garrett Holtz, Denver, Colo.:, Katie
Hersom, Oklahoma City, Okla.; Katie Wieberg, Lawson, Mo.; Kaylynn
Monroe, Winter Park, Fla.; Nate Kerkhoff, Overland Park, Kan.; Jack
Caywood, Lawrence, Kan; Haley Dodd, Overland Park, Kan.; and Donald
Hunt, Philadelphia, Pa.
The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization
founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,200 men and women who cover college football
for a living. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists,
as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works
to govern areas that include gameday operations, major awards and its annual All-America
team. For more information about the FWAA and its award programs, contact Steve
Richardson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 972-713-6198.
• Volney Meece Scholarship