SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill – A gray cloudy sky covered the Scott Event Center on Scott Air Force Base, Illinois as a light glowed from inside the building that contrasted the gloomy weather. One could say that it was because of the great lighting the Event Center has, but another could argue that it was the glowing group of teens who were being recognized for their hard work.
Over $1,000 in scholarships were given to three area high school students thanks to Scott’s Korean American Association of the Scott Area. The KAASA is a non-profit private organization, which is represented by Korean Americans on Scott AFB that supports the local community through charity and educational outlets.
The scholarships were awarded to Danielle Chao, Alex Tillock, and Brady Martinez.
Andria Crawley the president of the KAASA said that this is the fourth year of giving scholarships like these to top performing high school students. She also said that the money they gathered up for these students was donated.
“A lot of people donate through yard sales, celebrating Lunar New Year and Korean Thanksgiving. We had good donations this year, so we were able to help three students.”
KAASA was created by Crawley to share Korean culture, give to the community, and for a personal reason as well.
“I see a lot of Airmen struggling, and they remind me of my daughter,” said Crawley. “She’s in Las Vegas, and I hope she meets somebody like our organization, so she can be involved.”
Crawley believed that having an organization like this could help Airmen like her daughter feel at home. She believes that her organization is different because they focus on the military community.
Senior Airman Sol Shin, 375th Contracting Squadron contract specialist, is the Vice President of the KAASA, and she believes that the organization has taken after Crawley’s mothering personality.
“I believe the Airmen she interacts with really look at her like a mother,” said Shin.
Alex Tillock, one of the scholarship winners, is grateful to receive funds from KAASA that will assist him when he attends Columbia University in New York City.
“This is really amazing,” said Tillock “Everything helps for college and with tuition being so high every bit is appreciated.”
KAASA plans on doing this again next year, as well as care for the local community. Crawley hopes that the students will appreciate their culture, and also give to their future communities.
Crawley added, “I’m sure they appreciate it, and I hope once they get a degree, and a good job they will get involved and help others like we did.”