The Farmingville Hills Chamber of Commerce, Inc. recognizes that it is "time to make a difference" and is offering a $500 scholarship to a Sachem East High School Senior.

2022 Nick Vavas
Time to Make a Difference Scholarship

Awarding Sachem East High School Seniors


We are offering a $500 scholarship to 2 (two) Sachem East High School Seniors.

To be eligible, the student must be:
1. Graduating from Sachem East this spring.
2. Attending an accredited college, vocational, or trade school in the fall (if selected, they will need to provide us with a letter of acceptance from the school they plan to attend).

To apply, use the form on the right to write a 750 word essay telling us what it means to you to "make a difference" in the Farmingville Community.

All entries must be submitted by Saturday, April 30th, 11:59PM.

Since 2012, we have offered scholarships to Sachem East High School Seniors. Last year, the Farmingville Hills Chamber of Commerce board of directors decided to rename the scholarship as the Nick Vavas Time to Make a Difference Scholarship.

In 2011, when the chamber was formed, it's mission since day one has been to advance the general welfare and prosperity of the Farmingville area so that its citizens and its business community shall prosper.

One of the chamber's first events was a fundraiser for Nick Vavas, who was a life-long member and at the time, was 24 years old and fighting medulloblastoma brain cancer, and was unable to work. Prior to this, Nick worked at Stop & Shop in the deli department, and as a substitute teacher at Waverly Avenue Elementary School in Sachem.

The chamber, in it's early stage of infancy, raised over $500 for Nick's medical bills. Nick was extremely grateful and began supporting all of the Chamber's events. Events such as our 2012 Dining & Dancing event, our 2 Feasts of Farmingville, farmers market, and all of our Street Fairs until last year, when, dealing with a recurrence of Medulloblastoma, he was unable to walk.

Nick spoke to Stop & Shop, Sachem School District, and Resurrection Church on behalf of the Chamber many times since 2011. With relentless effort, he got permission for the chamber to hand out flyers for all of our events outside of Stop & Shop in Farmingville.

He was a special education elementary school teacher, because he wanted to help the younger kids that people didn't understand, or give a chance to.

When Nick's cancer came back in January of 2019, the chance of a 5 year survival was 10%. He was being treated at Mt. Sinai in NYC due to their excellent neuro department. As a result of the fundraiser, Nick became best friends with our director of membership, Marisa Pizza. She was with him 5 days before he passed. The last thing that he said to her was 'Farmingville'.

CONGRATULATIONS to the 2021 Time To Make A Difference Scholarship winners.

Learn more about the winners.

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