Ashley W.

Undergraduate Recipient

"In honor of the 25th anniversary of the AbbVie CF Scholarship, choose an event (personal or cultural/historical) from the past 25 years and describe how it has impacted your journey with CF."

For 17 years, my family and I have participated in the Great Strides Walk in Leesburg, Virginia. This walk is coordinated by the family of Meghan Stewart, who suffered from Cystic Fibrosis. Meghan's mother always kicked off the walk by sharing anecdotes about Meghan, but in 2007 that changed, as Meghan, only a high school freshman, passed away from a significant decline in her health. As her mom began to share Meghan’s story, her emotion built until her voice cracked and tears began to stream down her face, the grief evidenced by the silence of the crowd. I was in middle school on that particular day, and I know that is the day I fully recognized the seriousness of my disease and its impact on my life. What I will always take away from that day, though, is that mom’s strength to keep fighting, despite what had happened; she still came out that year because she wanted to make a difference in everyone’s life that is still battling Cystic Fibrosis. This walk clarified the amazing support system I have in my life, as I looked around at all of the supporters, from family and friends, to physicians and even strangers that were there that day fighting for me, for my health, for my success, for my cure. While I will always remember Meghan and her fight, I see this walk as a symbol of hope for my future and for a chance to live my life without this burden.


Ashley W.'s Artwork

Ashley W.'s Achievements

  • Valedictorian of Graduating Class, 2017
  • Wash Cty Public Schools True Grit Award Winner (for overcoming hardships to participate in sports), Character Counts! Award winner
  • BHS Varsity Sports:Soccer (2015, 2016) (captain 2016); Basketball (2015, 2016) (captain, sportsmanship award winner 2016), Track (2016, 2017) (state champions 2016)
  • National Honor Society (2015-2017) (vice president 2017)
  • Club Soccer: Locomotive FC (2014 - 2016)
  • Spanish Honor Society (2015-2017); Maryland State Dept of Education's Maryland Seal of Bilteracy award (2017)
  • Class Cabinet (2014-2017) (secretary, head of advertising committee), Student Government (2014-2016) (head of advertising committee)
  • Tutoring (2014-2017)/Hagerstown Community College: College for Kids Program Youth Leader (2014)
  • Community Vacation Bible School Youth Leader (2013 - 2017)
  • Great Strides for Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Participant/Fundraiser, 2010-2017