palm springs modern committee

Palm Springs Modern Committee Awards Scholarships to Local High School Students

Annual reception held at the historic Desert Star Apartment Hotel

Site Staff Social Scene

palm springs modern committee
(From left) Palm Springs Modern Committee member Peter Blackburn, Secretary Mary Jensen, and President Chris Menrad stand with award winners Rachel Wright and Ruben Gonzalez with support from board member Julie Rogers and Education Committee chair Robert Imber.

The Palm Springs Modern Committee recognized four exceptional Class of 2016 high school graduates during a reception held June 9 at the historic Desert Star apartment hotel.

The students, who are pursuing higher education in architecture and design or related fields, each received a $1,500 scholarship award from the Palm Springs Modern Committee (PSMODCOM).

Hosts Debra and Richard Hovel and PSMODCOM board members greeted the students, friends, family and school officials at the classic midcentury modern Palm Springs apartment hotel designed in 1956 by noted Palm Springs architect Howard Lapham. Guests socialized while enjoying passed hors d’oeuvres and beverages and touring the meticulously restored property.

Later in the evening, Robert Imber, PSMODCOM’S Education Committee chairman, acknowledged the students’ accomplishments and the scholars shared their college plans with the group.

“Each year, we are increasingly impressed by the PSUSD scholarship applicants, and pleased to provide support and guidance as they head off to new schools, new adventures, and a new chapter in their lives,” said Imber. “If, over time, we are of benefit to their professional choices or careers, the reward is immeasurable.“

Scholars Rachel Wright (Cathedral City High School); Zamira Zanae Voorhies (Desert Hot Springs High School), Ruben Gonzalez (Rancho Mirage High School); and Kaleb Nortridge (Palm Springs High School) each received framed scholarship certificates, and a tote bag filled with books and documentary DVDs, PSMODCOM’S Palm Springs Midcentury Modern Architecture Driving Tour application; and PSMODCOM’s Self-Driving Tour Map — all highlighting the most important midcentury modern architecture in the Palm Springs area.

PSMODCOM is a 501(C-3) non-profit organization whose mission includes preservation, education and advocacy for midcentury modern architecture. The Committee provides four scholarships to graduating senior high school students who have expressed interest in pursuing a career in architecture, preservation, city planning or environmental studies. One student from each of the four Palm Springs Unified Scholl District (PSUSD) high schools is selected from a cache of applicants meeting various criteria provided by the schools’ counseling department.

Funds are provided to the student’s college or university school account to be used at their discretion for tuition, supplies or for housing. The scholarship can also be applied to a PSMODC OM approved independent project proposed by the scholarship recipient. Every year PSMODCOM is pleased to participate in each of the school’s award ceremonies where students receive a complimentary PSMODCOM membership and packet of educational materials as part of their scholarship.

The Palm Springs Modern Committee

Photography by Loretta Vlach