The Chautauqua Region Community Foundation announces the selection of Crystal Theriault and Jennifer Tanner as the first two recipients of the Marianne Carpenter Memorial Scholarship Fund, established by to assist parents enrolled in the Erie 2 – Chautauqua-Cattaraugus BOCES Practical Nursing Program.
Walking in Marianne’s footsteps and sharing her passion for helping others, Theriault and Tanner are both working mothers in pursuit of a nursing career. They were chosen for their work ethic, determination, dedication, caring, and nurturing natures – the same attributes possessed by Carpenter.
Marianne Aldrich was born in Buffalo, a high school graduate of Mount Mercy Academy. She received her Associates degree from Trocaire College and went on to further her education at Buffalo State College, earning a BA in humanities/arts, in 1995. She met and married Michael Carpenter soon afterwards and settled into the Chautauqua region. She was a devoted mother to four children, known for her kind heart, generous, and thoughtful nature. Once her children were older, she decided to follow her dreams and return to school.
Carpenter enrolled as a student in the Erie 2-BOCES School of Practical Nursing. Not long after starting classes in 2012, however, she was diagnosed with lung cancer. Forced to withdraw in order to concentrate on fighting her illness, she had already made a substantial impact on her fellow students. Always positive, always giving, always focused on the future, she touched the lives of many.
Staying by her side, her friends, family, and classmates supported and nurtured her, even as the disease began taking its toll. When it became clear she would not be able to return to finish her education, Carpenter’s BOCES classmates and instructors began planning a “graduation” ceremony for her. In May 2013, everyone made the trip to her home in Randolph to present her degree and celebrate her life. One week later, she succumbed to cancer.
Tom Wade, a Randolph resident, partner in the Alliance Advisory Group, and friend of the Carpenters, submitted Marianne’s story to Guardian Life Insurance Company, resulting in a $10,000 donation. This generous gift forms the basis of the scholarship fund. Michael Carpenter said, “While she (Marianne) was undergoing treatment, we saw nurses every day. They made her smile when things weren’t going well.” It seemed very fitting to him that the Guardian donation should be used to foster the dreams of future nurses.
The School of Practical Nursing is part of the E2CCB Adult and Community Education Division. It oversees a variety of educational programs for students. Upon completion of the 12-month program, students are prepared and eligible to take the New York State LPN Licensing Exam. For more information, call 664-4866. To learn more about or make a contribution to the Marianne Carpenter Memorial Scholarship Fund, visit crcfonline.org or call 661-3390.