Schenectady County

David J. Goyette vocational scholarship announced

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SCHENECTADY – The Schenectady Foundation recently announced its third scholarship within the organization, named in memory of David J. Goyette.  Schenectady County residents who are pursuing a vocational career or to teach vocational education are eligible to apply.

Created from an endowment of more than 60 individuals, the David J. Goyette $2,500 scholarship is open to students who either are enrolled, or plan to enroll, in a certificate or degree program for the skilled trades of heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration, welding, electrical, building construction, machining, auto collision repair and refinishing, engine repair; or to teach in a vocational field.

The deadline to apply is Nov. 1 and one or more applicants will receive this year’s scholarship for the spring 2021 semester.

“This is an endowed scholarship that we are going to be issuing annually,” Gloria Kavanah, his widow said. “At least for this year it is $2,500 and we expect the amount in the future to be the same, at least.

“There were more than 60 different contributors. Part of the beauty of it is that there were so many people [who] were so supportive of it.”

According to the Schenectady Foundation announcement, Goyette, a Cohoes High School grad, returned to college in his 40s and at the age of 49 graduated Summa Cum Laude from SUNY Oswego with a Bachelor of Science in Vocational Education. He started his career in education by teaching a semester at Hudson Valley Community College and the HVAC/R adult education certificate course at Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES. 

He then went on to create the curriculum and the laboratory for the Fulton-Montgomery Community College HVAC/R program and taught the courses for several years.   

Goyette died after a year-long battle with lymphoma and complications from a bone marrow transplant in December 2019, Kavanah said.

The Schenectady Foundation already offers two other scholarship programs to county residents. 

The Anna Hudson Erbacher Scholarship is awarded to graduating seniors to assist them in their aspirations to become teachers, while the Schenectady STEM Scholarship is awarded to a graduating senior from Schenectady High School who will be pursuing math, science or engineering studies in college. 

The idea of the scholarship came to Kavanah after Goyette’s passing.

“Dave and I had not spoken about it, but it is something that I know would absolutely be the perfect way he would want to be remembered,” she said. “We both spoke extensively about our belief in vocational education and what it can do for a person.”

For more information about applying for this scholarship, contact Jean Churchill at [email protected] or 518-393-9500.

Reach Stan Hudy at [email protected] and follow @StanHudy on Twitter.

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