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Committee Selects 2021 Landmarks Scholarship Winners

One of the 2021 Landmarks Scholarship recipients focused his application essay on the National Negro Opera House located in Homewood, which was last year listed as one of the 11 Most Endangered Historic Places by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Our Landmarks Scholarship, now in its twenty-third year, connects college-bound high school students who live in Allegheny County, have a 3.25-grade point average or above, are involved in their community, and care deeply about the Pittsburgh region with the resources to support their continuing education. The Scholarship Committee recently announced this year’s award recipients with the goal of helping as many young people as possible. “Just as we did last year, we really tried to be a ray of light and hope in a high-school students’ challenging experience during 2020 and 2021,” said David Brashear, Committee chair and founder of our Scholarship program.

 Our Scholarship Committee is pleased to announce the following winners:

2021 Scholarship Recipients

(Each scholarship has a maximum value of $6,000 and is payable over a four-year period to the recipient’s college/university student account. The scholarship is for book and tuition expenses.)

  • Sage Arnold (Pittsburgh Allderdice /University of Rochester)
  • Drew Young (Oakland Catholic/South Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University)
  • Eric Gary (Kiski School/Allegheny College)

2021 Honorable Mention Recipients

(This is a one-time payment of $250 to the recipient’s college/university student account.)

  • Ilham Ariouat (Bethel Park High School/Chatham University)
  • Natalie Beinlich (Elizabeth Forward High School/Washington and Lee University)
  • Ryan Boyle (McKeesport Area Senior High School/University of Florida)
  • Sylvia Donahue (West Allegheny High School/Penn State University)
  • Elijah Duckworth (North Allegheny Senior High School/Undecided)
  • Gil Isaac Gabriel (City Charter High School/ West Chester University of Pennsylvania)
  • Graham Herzig (Avonworth High School/Penn State University)
  • Yunshu Li (North Allegheny Senior High School/Carnegie Mellon University)
  • Gwendolyn Nace (Quaker Valley High School/Pratt Institute)
  • Benjamin Stalder (Aquinas Academy/University of Richmond)

Congratulations to all!

As part of the process, applicants were asked to write an essay about a place in Allegheny County that is important to them. “The students’ insights into the landmark places of Allegheny County are incredibly moving; they demonstrate that even during difficult times, connections to our community landmarks are what anchor and sustain us,” said co-director of education Sarah Greenwald.

Excerpts from some of the essays include the following insights:

  • Frick Park: “Although my time in Frick Park is most often spent by myself, I never feel alone knowing the beautiful natural history of the woods. […] The centuries of history embedded in the soil of Frick Park teach lessons about the importance of maintaining balance in tumultuous times.”


  • August Wilson African American Cultural Center: “The building is a pure work of art. It was purposefully constructed on a corner in downtown Pittsburgh. The exterior of the building was inspired by ships that transported Swahili culture from West Africa. Additionally, the exterior material is composed of metal, stone, and glass which provides an illusion of movement and freedom. […] I identify with its position on the corner in the middle of downtown because it signifies a crossroad––which I feel as a senior in high school, about to transition to a college freshman.”


  • National Negro Opera House: “Through all the years of wear and tear it is still standing. I believe in my heart that a miracle is going to take place and the historically important building will receive the needed funding and can be saved for all to see.”

“As one recipient so eloquently wrote: ‘I love helping kids. I know when we start them young, we can plant a seed and watch them grow.’ Our Scholarship Program does just that by supporting these young leaders and being an organization that gives them a way to always re-connect with and value their hometown,” said Louise Sturgess, education advisor. “We are grateful to the Brashear Family, to committee members, and to other donors who so generously support our annual Scholarship Program.”

Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation

100 West Station Square Drive, Suite 450

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Phone: 412-471-5808  |  Fax: 412-471-1633