HARVARD -- The dedicated, civic-minded example set by the late Virginia Thurston, a former selectman, avid gardener and all-around, active good citizen, formed the basis for an endowment established in her name to fund an annual scholarship for a graduating senior at the Bromfield School.

All graduating seniors are eligible to apply for the scholarship, which focuses on civic achievements and goals. The deadline for submitting applications, available in the guidance office, is May 3.

As per the endowment rules, selectmen choose the winner, to be announced at the school's annual awards dinner a couple of days before graduation.

The Thurston scholarship amount may be in question this year, but not for the first time. A couple of years ago, when the account's low interest yield shrank the dollar figure available for the award, selectmen tapped a separate trust fund to fill in the gap.

Now they're considering permanently lowering it.

Bob Thurston, Ginny's son, has said he wants the scholarship to continue, at a reduced amount if necessary. Ideally, he'd like to start distributing the principal, selectmen said, but if that's not possible due to the endowment setup, the award will be for $200.

-- M.E. JONES