Four uplifting stories you might have missed this week

In case you missed it, here are four uplifting stories from the Miami Valley this past week.

First class of UD Flyer Promise Scholars to graduate: ‘I made it. I didn’t do it alone’

Credit: University of Dayton

Credit: University of Dayton

In May, 40 students from the first class of the University of Dayton’s Flyer Promise Scholars program will graduate.

The program established in 2017 assists high school seniors at partner schools with substantial university and donor funded scholarships and grant assistance. The students are also offered support in the form of a mentorship and leadership opportunities.

Dezanee’ Bluthenthal, a first-generation college graduate, graduated from the Dayton Early College Academy and faced many challenges before attending college which made the idea of a degree a financially out of reach.

“My family really didn’t have much, but when it came to school, that was something my mother made sure we took very seriously,” she said. “So it wasn’t that I doubted I was educated enough or had the willpower to succeed here.”

During her time at UD she suffered the loss of her grandfather and was temporarily homeless, but still made it a point to support others.


Meet the woman who oversees planning, design of Five Rivers MetroParks, ‘I live to be outside’

Nature is the prescription for what ails us.

“No matter what’s happening in your life, nature always offers joy and solace, adventure and security,” said Carrie Scarff, chief of planning and projects for Five Rivers MetroParks.

Scarff says she thrives outdoors and during the pandemic many of us realized we flourish in nature too.

“With the help a lot of a talented and dedicated colleagues, I oversee planning, design, construction, land protection and geographic information systems (GIS). So we develop the master plans, site plans and strategic plans for MetroParks.”


Giving back to the community a priority for local company

While most nonprofit organizations continue to struggle financially even as the COVID-19 pandemic begins to wind down, there are companies that have continued to do well, despite the economic downturn. One local company that has always had a focus on philanthropy, has stepped up efforts to help others this past year.

Stephanie Parks-Gale of Beavercreek is the director of human resources for Silfex, a company with locations in both Clark and Preble counties with more than 1,000 employees.

She chose the field of human resources because she has always loved helping others, something she learned growing up with a social worker mother as inspiration.

“I watched my mom make a career out of helping others,” Parks-Gale said. “It just became ingrained in me, and I’ve long had a passion for helping and supporting people in many ways.


Founding members of Rubi Girls celebrate Dayton with new television show

Credit: Nearu TV

Credit: Nearu TV

Two founding members of the Rubi Girls have launched a new television show featuring games and Dayton-centric segments with local guests. “The FonDana Show,” set to premiere Tuesday, April 13 at Mudlick Tap House, is hosted by Fonda Peters (Tim Farquhar) and Dana Sintell (Joshua Stucky).

For the past few decades, the Rubi Girls have been performing comedy drag shows to sold-out crowds.

As the coronavirus pandemic began to take shape in the Miami Valley, Stucky and Farquhar felt it was important to bring their comedic shenanigans to a platform everyone could access.

They believed “The FonDana Show” could be the perfect platform to showcase the community leaders, organizations, businesses and charities that represent the heart of Dayton.


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