Jul 09, 2013
Contributed by Molly Sweeney
South Windsor, Conn. — Christine A. Allard, of South Windsor, has been named to receive the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter’s 2013 Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s Miracle MS Memorial Fund Scholarship.
Allard, 17, a graduate of South Windsor High School, will attend Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven this fall in pursuit of a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing.
Allard has been a member of the South Windsor girls’ varsity soccer team for four years, and served as captain of the team her senior year, which attained first team All-State and first team All-Conference status. Allard is also a member of the Northeast United Soccer Club. Christine will continue her soccer career by playing Division II soccer at Southern Connecticut State University.
Allard is also involved with the Bobcat Pride Organization at her high school. This organization helps to plan spirit events at South Windsor High School, such as school dances. Outside of school, Allard works at Bounce Town, furthering her love of helping and interacting with children. This summer, she will serve as a camp counselor at South Windsor Park and Recreation’s Camp Discovery.
Allard has found inspiration from her mother, Donna, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis when Christine was only 15 years old. After Donna’s diagnosis, Christine took on extra responsibilities, including household chores and helping her mother administer disease-modifying therapy shots.
Through her mother’s diagnosis with MS, Christine Allard has learned that she has a passion for helping others feel better. This passion, along with that of helping children, has motivated Allard to pursue an education in pediatric nursing.
More than 6,000 Connecticut residents, like Donna Allard, have multiple sclerosis, an autoimmune disease affecting the central nervous system. Multiple sclerosis generally affects women more than men and is most often diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50. Symptoms can include numbness and tingling in the limbs, difficulties with speech and vision and, in some severe cases, complete paralysis. There is no cure for multiple sclerosis.
Allard was recognized by the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, at its annual Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s Miracle MS Memorial Scholarship Reception, which was held at the Country Club of Farmington, Thursday, June 6. She is one of 16 high school graduates receiving a 2013 scholarship from the Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s Miracle MS Memorial Scholarship Fund.
Scholarships are made possible through the Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s MS Memorial Fund, which specifically supports the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter’s family programs. The fund was established in July 2007 by the family to honor the memory of Jennifer Hawke-Petit, who had MS, and her daughters Hayley and Michaela, who were active with the chapter helping raise funds to support scientific research for a cure.
“I receive a great sense of satisfaction from helping my mom,” shared Allard. “I am very excited about receiving this scholarship because it will give me the opportunity to pursue my education as a nurse, allowing me to help even more people.”
Scholarship applications for the 2014 school year will be available online in October. For more information on MS or for additional information on 2014 MS scholarship criteria, please contact the Connecticut Chapter at 860-913-2550 or visit www.ctfightsMS.org.