The Evanstonian

Scholarship continues legacy of beloved teacher and coach

Ben Osterlund, Mark Roth (2015) and Charlie Maxwell (2016) at last year's softball tournament

Ben Osterlund, Mark Roth (2015) and Charlie Maxwell (2016) at last year's softball tournament

Sam Calian, News Editor

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Last year, Ross Freeland, a former math teacher and baseball coach, passed away from stomach cancer. His memory lives on through ETHS students, staff, and now the Ross Freeland Scholarship.

“Mr. Freeland meant the world to this school and he’s missed every single day,” baseball coach Frank Consiglio said. “My mission is to keep the memory of Mr. Freeland alive and for all to understand what he meant to this community.”

Freeland passed away almost exactly a year ago after two months of fighting with stomach cancer. During his 20 years of teaching and coaching, he touched many lives, improving them all with his kind touch.

“The scholarship is awarded to the student who demonstrates excellence in athletics and academics, and also shows selflessness and strong character,” Consiglio said.

This scholarship was created entirely through a community effort. After 10 months of fundraising through a gofundme and hosting events, like the softball tournament, the scholarship committee raised $2,765.

The scholarship is awarded to a senior student for excellence in mathematics, interest in the field of statistics, entrepreneurship or engineering, and strong involvement in athletics, while always putting others first. Last year, since Freeland’s death was so sudden, the scholarship did not offer applications. Instead, it was awarded based on recommendations from the committee. Moving forward, however, students who meet the requirements can apply for it online through their myETHS account.

 

Last year, 2016 graduate Charlie Maxwell was given the scholarship as a reward for his hard work both on and off the field.

“Winning the Freeland scholarship was the greatest honor I could ever ask for,” Maxwell said. “I strive to be a little more like him each day, so to have received an award for in his honor is the most amazing feeling.”

It is important to know that even though Freeland was a baseball coach, the scholarship is available to all athletes.

Freeland was known for his saying, “It’s a process”, exemplifying his ethic as a hard worker who knew excellence was not innate, rather it is earned through practice and preparation both in the classroom and on the field.

Donations can be made to the fund at https://eths.revtrak.net/tek9.asp?pg=products&grp=183

“Ross Freeland was an inspiring teacher and coach, a caring person and friend, with a servant’s heart, always putting others first,” said Dale Leibforth, head of the Math Dept. “Ross is a great role model for both students and staff, and he is truly missed by all.”

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Scholarship continues legacy of beloved teacher and coach