Two high school seniors will receive four-year, full scholarships to attend Palm Beach Atlantic University in the fall. The University celebrated the students’ accomplishments last week with National Signing Day-style ceremonies at their schools.
The King’s Academy’s Kyle David Martin and Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts’ Grace Marie Barrett earned Farish Scholarships for their high academic achievement and commitment to community service. Tim Worley, the University’s vice president for admissions, presented the incoming freshmen with certificates at the ceremonies attended by their parents and school administrators.
“Today’s culture is all too often anxious to celebrate athletes with great pomp and circumstance prior to them ever scoring a goal, scoring a touchdown, hitting the walk-off home run. We all too often neglect to celebrate the champions of the classroom in their success,” Worley said at Martin’s signing ceremony. “Today, we’re going to do things a little differently. We’re going to honor those to whom honor is due.”
The University established the scholarship program with a donation from Joseph Farish, Jr. and his wife Loreen Beisswenger Farish. Joseph Farish was a World War II veteran who survived the D-Day invasion and the Battle of the Bulge. After the war, he became a fierce litigator and then a judge.
To qualify for an application for the Farish scholarship, a student must have a GPA of at least 3.5 and an SAT score of at least 1380. Upon qualifying, candidates submit two essays and come to campus for interviews with key faculty and staff.
Martin had a GPA of about 4.5 and an SAT score of 1510. In addition to impressing the interview panel, “Kyle’s essays resonated with the characteristics embodied by Mr. Farish of hard work, caring and most importantly, character,” Worley said.
In his essay, he thanked his parents for developing his character from a young age with their authoritative style, which provided security and discipline and allowed him to learn what it means to be a man of character.
Both of Martin’s parents, Randal “Randy” Martin ’93 and Heidi Martin ’93, are PBA alumni. Randy Martin is president of The King’s Academy.
“I’m blessed to be following in my dad’s footsteps attending a great university like PBA debt-free, which is something to be said in this time in America,” Kyle Martin said. “Words really can’t express how grateful I am.”
Doug Raines ’00/MS ‘02, headmaster of The King’s Academy, said Kyle is “the very best” of what the school’s leaders hope to achieve.
“Kyle is an extraordinary intellect, but he is certainly a man of God,” Raines said. “He’s grown up here in front of all of us at The King’s Academy.”
Barrett is a leader in the vocal department at Dreyfoos and has more than 900 community service hours. She has been an Awana Club leader for three years. She creates sets for her church’s Vacation Bible School and serves as a crew leader during the week. She has participated in a mission trip every year since the summer after sixth grade.
Said Barrett in her essay: “Working with people brings me an incredible amount of joy.”
Barrett thanked her parents, teachers and the staff at PBA – her top choice for as long as she’s been seriously thinking about college.
“I love that it’s a Christian college and that I’m going to be able to grow in my faith and be surrounded by other people who share the same values,” she said. “All of my accomplishments come directly from God. That is not me. That’s Him working through me. I’m just so grateful. Thank you so much.”
Photo 1: Farish Scholar Kyle Martin and his parents Randal and Heidi Martin pose for a photo during a National Signing Day-style celebration at The King's Academy. PBA awarded Martin a four-year, full scholarship.
Photo 2: Farish Scholar Grace Barrett poses with her scholarship certificate at a National Signing Day-style ceremony at Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts last week. PBA awarded Barrett a four-year, full scholarship.