James Luke Memorial Scholarship Information

Jim was Class of 2000 with me at Padua and Doug, his father was Class of 1967. When Jim passed away, his Mom asked that the Knights of Columbus (Which Jim and I were members of) administer a scholarship in his honor.  She provided $500 in seed money and we took it from there. All 8th graders from St. Columbkille and Assumption Academy who will be attending a Catholic High School are eligible to apply for the scholarship.


Applicants are evaluated on 3 factors:


  • Grade Point Average


  • Church Involvement


  • A 250 word essay on “Why is attending a Catholic High School important to you?”


Originally, it was just 2 scholarships for $1,000 apiece. In 2016, we upped the ante a little, making each scholarship $1,000 per year for 4 years for a total of $8,000.  It never sat well with many of us that we would give an 8th grader a scholarship for the first year only to ask them or their family to find the $1,000 for the next 3 years.  So it is a 4-year scholarship now, provided the student continues to attend a Catholic High School.


 Written by Paul Marnecheck


2017 (4-year scholarship of $1,000 per year)


Hope L.


Katie K.


2016 (4-year scholarship of $1,000 per year)


Angelina L.


Natalie S.




Ariana M.


Zach Z.




Bianca C.


Jack V.




Stephen P.


Abigail M.




Kevin G.


Nina M.




Matthew M.


Kevin H.

Excerpts from winning essays


“Attending a Catholic High School is important to me for many reasons. For example, Catholic schools instill….the importance of love for Family, a diligent work ethic, dedication to serving others, good personal character, and faith in God. My mother always told my brother and I, with these values, anything is possible.”


“I watched [my parent] new clothes, vacations, and a simple evening out with friends so that our tuition could be paid on time.”


“…Catholic education is more than reading, writing, arithmetic; it is about serving others as Jesus once taught us to do. I am sure that without this example in Catholic Schools, something would be missing in the development of my faith”


“A strong message that a Catholic education weaves within the academics, is that of good character. I firmly believe that good character is developed through the support and encouragement of the Catholic Schools. Compassion, integrity, citizenship are a few examples of the qualities that will carry people through life.  You can be the quarterback, the top fundraiser, or even the top of your class; but all of these things combined without good character means nothing.”


“By far, the most valuable thing  I have gained by receiving a Catholic education is my faith in God. I know the talents that I have to share with others are truly a gift from God….nothing in life is earned without the grace and sacrifice of God.”


“Attending a Catholic High School is important to me because of I struggled with my faith and was not sure I was going in the right direction growing up. I knew where I was, and that I was Catholic, but I never fully understood Catholicism”


“[After a school retreat] I realized I could still talk to God through prayer…I went to confession and started to talk to God and [my deceased grandparent] a lot more. God was always there for me when no one else was and listened when I felt like everybody had their back to me. To this day, God is still there when I need someone to talk to or when I need help getting back on the right path.”