Traci L. Haines Memorial Scholarship Fund

Est. 2008 as a scholarship fund by Frank A. Haines for graduating students from Seymour High School.

Traci Haines was the perfect daughter - someone who loved and was loved dearly.

She graduated as Valedictorian of her Seymour High School Class of 1988, and continued her studies at Johnson State Teacher's College, Post College and the University of Hartford. After obtaining both Bachelors and Masters degrees in Early Childhood Education, Traci worked for fifteen years as the head teacher for Ansonia Day Care, run by TEAM, Inc. Tragically, Traci's life was cut short.

In 2004, Traci was diagnosed with colon cancer and died on July 31, 2006 at the age of 36. At that most difficult time, her family suggested that, in lieu of flowers, donations to create a scholarship fund would best honor Traci's life, and they received more than $3,000 in donations in her memory.

In the beginning, the Haines family managed the Fund themselves and added to it regularly. This past winter, their Attorney, Fred Stanek, suggested they pursue additional options for the scholarship. That's when they turned to VCF.

"We were looking for ways to help the scholarship grow stronger, and opening a Fund with the Valley Community Foundation was clearly the best fit for us," said Frank Haines, Traci's father. "Our family had five children who all went to college. They got a lot of help from different scholarships along the way, so we know first hand what a difference that can make. We also know that this scholarship will help someone else achieve their dream of working with young children as Traci did."

The Traci L. Haines Memorial Scholarship Fund, which now contains over $10,000, provides grants to Seymour High School graduates who will be attending college with the intent of pursuing a degree in early childhood or elementary education. The family included a tribute to their daughter's life and career in the Fund's language, which requires that applicants should have "demonstrated integrity and a willingness to work hard in the service of others and/or in the attainment of personal goals."

"Traci did exactly that in every aspect of her life," said Frank Haines. "My wife and I didn't go to college, but we worked very hard to make sure that our children had the opportunity to do so. This Fund is all about Traci - all about how committed she was to doing her best each and every day and living her life to those high standards. She was just a sweetheart - and we can think of no better way to continue her legacy than by establishing this Fund in her honor."

To make a tax-deductible contribution to this fund, please complete the secure, online credit card form below:

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Traci L. Haines Memorial Scholarship Fund