Knowledge is power

Rivka Leah Hor­witz is grate­ful that she’s re­ceived the Great­er North­east Phil­adelphia Cham­ber of Com­merce Found­a­tion’s schol­ar­ship not once, but twice.

Hor­witz used the ini­tial schol­ar­ship to study for a year in Is­rael. She de­scribed the time spent abroad as a “life-chan­ging learn­ing ex­per­i­ence.”

In Is­rael, she ex­per­i­enced the cul­ture, taught second-graders about safety and was in­volved in a home­work-help pro­gram for young people im­pacted by can­cer.

This year, she is study­ing at Touro Col­lege in Man­hat­tan. She’s ma­jor­ing in bio­logy and hopes to work in the health­care field. Next semester, she’ll work as an in­tern at Columbia Uni­versity Med­ic­al Cen­ter in New York.

As the old­est of six chil­dren, Hor­witz said the schol­ar­ship money has gone a long way to­ward pay­ing her tu­ition. Her broth­er Aaron is also a re­cip­i­ent.

Last Fri­day, she at­ten­ded a lunch­eon and si­lent auc­tion at Know­lton Man­sion, at Rhawn Street and Ver­ree Road in Fox Chase, hos­ted by Wo­men­For­ward, a group that raises money for the found­a­tion. She thanked the 120-plus wo­men who “self­lessly give” to as­sist North­east col­lege stu­dents.

The schol­ar­ships are about more than money, in her view.

“I also ac­quired a net­work of wo­men who are cheer­ing me on,” she said.

Wo­men­For­ward, dir­ec­ted by Col­lette McBrat­ney, has held nine gath­er­ings. The group has helped fund 35 schol­ar­ships since 2007. An­oth­er 10 schol­ar­ships will be dis­trib­uted next year.

The event fea­tured beau­ti­ful Christ­mas mu­sic by Teresa Desi­ato.

Tracy Dav­id­son, an NBC 10 news an­chor­wo­man and con­sumer re­port­er, was the key­note speak­er. She re­cently earned a re­li­gious stud­ies cer­ti­fic­ate from St. Charles Bor­romeo Sem­in­ary in Wyn­newood and is pur­su­ing a de­gree in pas­tor­al coun­sel­ing at Chest­nut Hill Col­lege.

“I’m a big ad­voc­ate for edu­ca­tion,” she said.

Rose­marie McMe­nam­in is chair­wo­man of the found­a­tion, and Al Tauben­ber­ger is pres­id­ent of its board.

Money is raised at the lunch­eon, the si­lent auc­tion and a “Hail to the Chefs” culin­ary event in the spring.

Ap­plic­ants must live in the North­east and are judged on their grades and ref­er­ences.

“It’s really an op­por­tun­ity to help them ac­com­plish their goals and dreams,” said Tauben­ber­ger, who is also pres­id­ent of the loc­al Cham­ber of Com­merce. 

This year’s schol­ar­ships are worth $1,100 apiece.

The cur­rent schol­ar­ship win­ners are Christine Mar­ie Ben­ner (East Strouds­burg Uni­versity), Aaron Hor­witz (Ye­shiva Uni­versity in Is­rael), Christine Kirlin (Widen­er Uni­versity School of Law), Kelly Kirlin (Peirce Col­lege), Wil­li­am J. Lawrence (Temple Uni­versity), Aron Litostanski (Temple Uni­versity), Megan Mont­gomery (Uni­versity of Delaware), Nich­olas Pables (King’s Col­lege), Rivka Leah Hor­witz (Touro Col­lege in New York) and Joseph F. McHugh (Temple Uni­versity’s Fox School of Busi­ness).

The stu­dents were honored at a din­ner in June at Tor­res­dale’s Glen Fo­erd on the Delaware man­sion.

To down­load a schol­ar­ship ap­plic­a­tion or for more in­form­a­tion, go to­pccfound­a­ and click “Wo­men­For­ward.” ••

Re­port­er Tom War­ing can be reached at 215-354-3034 or twar­

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