Deshae Darrell, the Bermuda Under-20 striker, is among the latest student athletes to benefit from the Clyde Best Scholarship Fund.
The Brookhaven College sophomore is one of five recipients that have been granted funding to assist with their studies this year.
Darrell thrived during her debut season in the Region 5 MAC Conference last year, scoring 14 goals during the regular season to earn the conference’s Golden Boot award.
She then continued her prolific form during the postseason where her seven goals — including five at the NJCAA Division III Women’s Championship — helped the Lady Bears capture their maiden national title.
Darrell finished as the leading scorer at the national championship and was also chosen as the tournament’s MVP.
The talented footballer is presently studying sports medicine at Texas-based Brookhaven College.
Kayla Corday, Ember Butterfield, Savannah Fisher and Simeon Burrows are this year’s other recipients.
Corday and Butterfield are studying child psychology at Saint Leo University in Florida and Concord University in West Virginia.
Fisher is studying sports management at Brock University in Ontario and Burrows international business at the Manchester Academy in England.
Burrows, whose sibling Ras Stafari was among the first recipients of the Clyde Best Scholarship Fund, is also presently serving a two-year contract at English side Salford City, who play in the Vanarama National League North.
All of this year’s recipients have come up through the youth football ranks at Somerset Cricket Club where Best groomed his skills before joining West Ham in the 1960s.
“It’s always nice to be able to contribute to our young people and a lot of these student athletes are doing wonderful things,” Best told The Royal Gazette during Saturday’s award ceremony held on the street named in his honour outside of Somerset Cricket Club. “One of this year’s recipients wants to do her doctorate after she finishes her degree so the scholarship fund is turning out good people in society.”
The Clyde Best Scholarship Fund was introduced in 2014.
Since then nearly $30,000 donated by the private and business sectors has been divided among the overall sixteen recipients to date which includes Bermuda and Somerset Cup Match cricketers Greg Maybury and Joshua Gilbert and senior national footballer Justin Donawa.
“We are very proud of the recipients who, from the day we started right along up to today, are doing extremely well academically and on the field whether it’s football, cricket or whatever,” said Diane Hunt, who serves on the scholarship fund committee. “When you stop and think about all the kids who have received support I feel very proud of what we have produced here in Sandys Parish.”
Best added: “It takes a village to raise a child and obviously we can’t do it all by ourselves.
“We need help and if any company out there is looking for somewhere to put money then they can look at us because we are doing good things.”