Aishlinn Parrinello needed to drop off one last piece of paperwork at the Cheshire Academy Admission Office on March 8 for her Town Scholarship application — or so she believed. When she opened the door, she was surprised to see Head of School Julie Anderson, Director of Admission Sara Lynn Leavenworth, and the whole Admission team assembled there, exclaiming, “Congratulations!”
Parrinello’s expression went from shock to joy as the reality set in. After all of her hard work and dedication, she was selected as Cheshire Academy’s Town Scholar.
“I had absolutely no idea what was happening when I first walked into the Admission Office,” Parrinello said. “I had never been so surprised in my life. It was the best feeling. I couldn’t stop smiling.”
The Town Scholar, who must be a Cheshire resident entering ninth grade, receives a full, four-year scholarship to Cheshire Academy, a boarding and day college preparatory high school founded in 1794. The scholarship, which dates back to 1937, also awards partial scholarships to additional, qualified applicants each year.
Parrinello, who is an eighth-grader at Dodd Middle School, was selected from more than a dozen accomplished candidates from Cheshire. The committee was particularly impressed with her work ethic, leadership qualities, and concern for those around her. She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society, a Dodd Middle School Student of the Month and a Superintendent’s Award recipient, representing excellence district-wide. She is a passionate, creative writer and also performs in musical theater productions, most recently as Jane Banks in a school production of “Mary Poppins Jr.” Parrinello serves as a student advocate, peer tutor, and a member of her student council. She also plays field hockey and volunteers in the community, most notably helping to organize a school food drive for the Cheshire Food Pantry.
“This year, as in years past, the members of the Cheshire Academy Admission Office were impressed by the level of academic achievement and athletic and artistic talent among scholarship applicants,” Leavenworth said. “The decision was a difficult one, but ultimately Aishlinn’s passion for learning, top grades, artistic talents and community involvement distinguished her among her peers as a truly outstanding person.”
“I loved CA from the first time I stepped on campus,” Parrinello said. “The people I’ve met so far have been so welcoming. I am really excited about the classes I will be able to take, especially in the International Baccalaureate programme. There are so many new things to try outside of the classes, too.”
Parrinello also expressed that as an aspiring author, she will take full advantage of Cheshire Academy’s robust English offerings.