During the annual Alumni Reunion Weekend Mass, the Academy announced the Endowed Sister Mary Patricia Plumb Scholarship, which will honor Sister Mary Patricia’s legacy by supporting students who share her passion for speech and debate. A scholarship will be awarded annually to rising 8th grader and a rising senior.
Sister Mary Patricia touched the lives of countless AHN alumni. Richard Gonzmart B’67 and his wife, Melanie Heiny Gonzmart A’72, generously donated a $50,000 challenge gift with the hopes of inspiring others to join in this fundraising effort to honor Sister’s memory.
Richard Gonzmart said, “Sister Patricia Plumb had a significant and lifelong impact on me starting with my fifth through eighth grade education at the Academy of the Holy Names. She realized my challenges with dyslexia and ADD and assisted me academically. Far more importantly, though, she reinforced my self-esteem in the classroom. ... More tests would follow in my life. Without her, I might never have overcome them and fulfilled my dreams. I owe much of my strong Catholic faith and the person I am today to Sister Patricia Plumb.”
Sister Mary Patricia entered the SNJM community after graduating from the Academy in 1955. Her roles in education spanned many areas, and not just at the Academy. She also taught in Albany and Liverpool, New York, as well as St. Cecilia’s in Clearwater, where she served as vice principal and principal. At the Academy, she was a teacher, including at Boys Academy, vice principal and campus minister.
Though she loved teaching, Sister Mary Patricia’s greatest passion was speech and debate. She earned Seventh Diamond as a National Speech & Debate Association coach and is a member of the organization’s Hall of Fame. When Sister Mary Patricia Plumb passed away this past winter, her family requested donations be made to AHN with the hope of establishing an endowed scholarship in her memory.
To contribute to the Endowed Sister Mary Patricia Plumb Scholarship, click here to give online. Checks may be mailed to Academy of the Holy Names, attn: Patty Bohannan, 3319 Bayshore Blvd. Tampa, FL 33629. Please write SMP Scholarship in the memo.