Newsmaker: Jessica Vega-Rogowicz
Noteworthy: A melanoma survivor, she created a scholarship for education majors at her alma mater, Carlow University. As part of the application process, students submit a lesson plan on sun safety and avoiding health hazards such as melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer.
Residence: Baldwin Township
Occupation: Teacher at West Hempfield Middle School in Hempfield Area School District
Background: She vacationed at the beach each year and started using tanning beds in college, resulting in a 2006 diagnosis of melanoma. She had a recurrence of melanoma in a different area in 2011.
Education: Brashear High School, 2000; bachelor of arts degree in elementary and special education, Carlow University, 2004; masters in school administration, Duquesne University, 2009
Quote: “When you're diagnosed with cancer, it hits you — ‘I have cancer' — and it makes a huge emotional impact. I thought establishing a scholarship was a way of incorporating education and raising awareness about sun safety.”