Grove Farm awards scholarships

PUHI — While volunteering at the Kauai Veterans Memorial Hospital, Bailee Taeza, a graduating senior at Waimea High School, developed her senior project as well as firming up her goal of pursuing a career in bioinformatics.

“She developed an app which would make records of Do Not Resuscitate patients readily available to caregivers,” said Marissa Sandblom, a vice president with the Grove Farm Company. “The app would make all the legal documents and medical records of the patient readily available to caregivers resulting in more efficient care with less confusion.”

The daughter of Matthew and Lani Taeza of Waimea was one of three students selected to be recipients of the 2017 Grove Farm Scholar scholarships. Joining Taeza as scholarship recipients Tuesday were Geneva Dela Cruz and Jacky Lin, both graduating from Kauai High School.

This is the eighth year the Grove Farm Foundation has provided scholarships to three eligible applicants who graduate from Kauai’s public high schools. Each Grove Farm Scholar will receive $5,000 per year for each of their four years of college, provided they continue volunteering and serving their community, Sandbloom said.

Each scholarship is valued at up to $20,000 and the recipients will receive their first award of $5,000 during the scholarship dinner at the Iliahi estate. Since the program started, Grove Farm Foundation has awarded $500,000 in scholarship awards.

Taeza has been volunteering at KVMH and at the Salvation Army helping to feed the needy in addition to serving as the WHS class president for the past three years. She is also a member of Adopt-a-Highway and the National Society of High School Scholars and the WHS girls golf program.

“My mom insisted that I use one of the golf pictures on my invitation,” Taeza said.

Taeza plans on attending Pacific University.

“We had to help keep the kids from jumping the fence,” said Dela Cruz, the daughter of Gregory and Evangeline Dela Cruz of Lihue. “We were with the Kauai High School Key Club helping at the Kauai Community College 52nd annual commencement, last week, and this kid tried to jump the fence.”

Dela Cruz, an alumni of St. Theresa School in Kekaha, said Bailee was her best friend while going to school.

The daughter of Gregory and Evangeline Dela Cruz is the treasurer for the Kauai High School Key Club as well as a team captain and Kauai Interscholastic Federation All-Star for the school’s bowling team. She plans on attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa to study psychology with an emphasis on pre-med.

A recipient of a Certificate of Commendation — Summer Study Tour to Japan: Freeman Foundation Scholarship, Geneva has been volunteering at the Regency at Puakea retirement and assisted living facility as well as at Wilcox Health and Elsie Wilcox Elementary School.

The current cyber attacks by ransomware hackers only reinforces Lin’s presidency of CyberPatriot, focusing on developing cybersecurity for the future.

The son of Li Zhu Lin of Lihue, Jacky has been volunteering with the Boys & Girls Club of Kauai, and is a member of Kauai High School’s Diversity Club, National Honor Society, and is the president of the Kauai High School Chess Club. He has been participating in the state’s science and engineering fair as well as being a team captain of Science Olympiad.

Jacky will be attending Stanford University to pursue a degree in applied mathematics.

“We strongly believe that our youth are an integral part of our island’s future,” said Warren Haruki, Grove Farm president and CEO. “Grove Farm’s commitment to serving our kama‘aina community here on Kauai has been a mainstay for us for more than 150 years.”

“Geneva, Jacky and Bailee have served their communities well and we are proud to be able to enable them to achieve their dreams,” Haruki added.

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