LEEP supports career dreams of 12 students nationwide
Twelve top students interested in public safety careers received $1,000 college scholarships to encourage their pursuit of law enforcement/public safety careers by the professional public safety officers of the Law Enforcement Education Program (LEEP).
In its eighth year, LEEP has awarded some $80,000 in Dream scholarships to students showing a demonstrated interest in public service/law enforcement careers. The non-profit public safety group’s scholarship program is made possible by a growing list of national supporters. Students from six states were honored in the 2012 LEEP Dream Scholarship program including:
of Rochester, MI. An Oakland Community College (OCC) student, he is the nephew of Benton Township Police Chief Vincent Fetke. A graduate of Oakland Christian School, he has volunteered with Pontiac Rescue Mission and other food banks, community and playground cleanups, and roofed houses for the poor. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to complete a specialized Criminal Justice bachelor’s degree program with three years at OCC and one year at Ferris State University.
of Grand Rapids, MI, attends Grand Rapids Community College. He was a police intern at Grand Rapids Police Department. At West Catholic High School, he was on cross-country and Captain of the Varsity Golf team. He tutored students and volunteers annually with Knights of Columbus Tootsie Roll Drive, benefiting the mentally impaired. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant at Grand Valley State University to follow in his father and grandfather’s footsteps as a law enforcement officer.
Tyler Harrell,of Coldwater, MI. An Olivet Nazarene University student, he was Vice President of Criminal Justice Skills USA and a Michigan State Police Explorer Lieutenant. He took criminal justice courses at Coldwater High School, was member of Interact Club, Varsity Golf Team and Varsity Tennis Team Captain. He attended Michigan State Police Trooper Program and Training Academy. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to pursue a career in law enforcement.
Nathan Leigeb, of Kingsley, MI. The Kingsley High School graduate, who battled Hodgkin Disease, achieved the top 25 percent nationally on the ACT. The Public Safety/Protective Services student interned with Grand Traverse Metro Fire Explorers and Grand Traverse County Jail. He received awards for Northwest Conference Academic All-Conference, Michigan High School Baseball Coaches Association Academic All-District, and President’s Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant at Lake Superior State University to pursue a law enforcement career.
Keegan McPhail, of Bellaire, MI, is a graduate of Bellaire High School. A Public Safety/Protective Services Class Commanding Officer, he worked with Michigan State Police road patrol, Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division, and Antrim County Corrections. He graduated Michigan State Police Law Enforcement Career Academy, was Football Team Captain, All-Conference Award winner and two-time All-Star. A Salvation Army bell ringer, he performs mission work. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to study Criminal Justice at Lake Superior State University.
Dylan Tantalo, of Owosso, MI, is a graduate of Corunna High School. He was Class President 2009-2012, Student Council Representative, Leadership Executive Council Founder, and Treasurer of Science Club and Family Career and Community Leaders of America. He was in Rotary Club, Corunna Spirit Club, Youth Advisory Council and Business Professionals of America. He volunteered with Support Our Seniors, Finnegan for Sheriff, class fundraisers and National Honor Society Highway Cleanup. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to study Criminal Justice at Ferris State University.
Rodger Thompson, of New Buffalo, MI, is a graduate of New Buffalo High School. His father is a Berrien County Sheriff’s Deputy. Thompson was Captain of the football and track teams, Class Secretary, and received a Coach’s Award in basketball. He was a member of Students Against Drunk Driving and Postponing Sexual Intimacy. He is involved in Youth Ministry, mission trips, beach sweeps, food drives, coached youth t-ball and football, and evaluated city sidewalks for grant proposals. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to study Sociology with a Criminal Justice emphasis at Hope College.
Lena Illig of Anchorage, AK, is studying Criminal Justice at University of Alaska. The University of Alaska Justice Club member graduated Alaska Military Youth Academy. She received a Spirit of Youth Recognition Award for work on a Crisis Hotline and Standing Together Against Rape. Certified in first aid and CPR, she works at Aviation Medical Services of Alaska and volunteers with Anchorage Police Search and Rescue Team. She plans to use her $1,000 LEEP grant to become a police officer and work in the FBI.
Yordan Coss of Stockton, CA, is a graduate of Tracy High School. A Tracy Police Explorer Sergeant, he wrote his senior essay on police brutality and use of force. He volunteered with Shop With A Cop and Relay for Life for the past nine years. He was on the cross-country, track and field, and Farm Power teams in high school. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to pursue a degree in Criminology at Fresno State University. He plans to enter a police academy, work as a police officer and later with the FBI.
Britt Whitaker of Dema, KY, is a Knott County High School graduate. Youth Leadership Ambassador for the Class of 2012, he was Football Team Captain, a member of National Youth Leadership Forum and KY Drive to Stay Alive — deterring drinking and driving. He mentored and tutored underclassmen. An Investigational Aide with Alcohol Beverage Control of Kentucky, he volunteers with Knott County Rescue Squad and Hindman Baptist Youth Group. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to major in Police Studies and minor in Criminal Justice at Eastern Kentucky University.
Matthew Lecocq of Pittsburgh, PA, attends Penn State. A Plum High School graduate, he interned with Plum Borough Police Department. He was a Boy Scout and Saber Team Commander of Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps, receiving a Reserve Officer Association Award. A volunteer at Independence Court Senior Center, he was in French Club and Symphonic and Marching bands. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to pursue an Administration of Justice degree and later attend a police academy.
Edward Moctezuma of Brownsville, TX, received a Criminal Justice degree from University of Texas. He completed Scorpion Academy, Citizens Police Academy and received two Sheriff’s Association of Texas scholarships. He was in the top 10 percent of his class at Lopez High School, distinguished in Spanish and Magnet Program of Fine Arts. He volunteered for community cleanups. He plans to use his $1,000 LEEP grant to pursue a master’s in Criminal Justice at Texas State, become a police officer, then an FBI agent.