Category Archives: Art Steffen Memorial Scholarship

Art Steffen was a History and Government teacher at Mountain View High School for ten (10) years, until his retirement in 2012.


Art touched the lives of many students through his ability to teach students not only about history and government, but a lot about life. He felt that every student had the innate ability to succeed, and all it took was that one person who could see the good in them, and that person was Art.

Art was a teacher, mentor, coach, and most of all, a kind and caring person who took the time to listen to a student. He loved to teach, and his teaching went well beyond the classroom.

Art Steffen was an amazing person, who left this earth unexpectedly, and way too early, in June 2014. The Art Steffen Citizenship Memorial Scholarship, presented by Art’s wife, Bev, honors her husband, a former Government teacher at Mountain View.

Your actions will have immediate affect. Your gift will help students currently attending Mountain View High School who are soon to be graduating this February or June.

100% of scholarship donations received go directly to students.

Student fundraising activities pay for all administrative costs.

100% of your donations are tax-deductible. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Bridget O’Boyle Receives Centreville Presbyterian Church Community Service Scholarship

Presbyterian Church Scholarship Bridget\

Bridget O’Boyle wrote in her essay, “Throughout my life I have always been involved in volunteering in my community of Reston.  I have volunteered in many different projects.  I have worked in a watershed project where the goal is to keep our lakes and streams clear for wildlife.  I have participated in the Relay for Life, to help raise money for Breast Cancer Research.  I have volunteered as a childcare assistant, a teacher’s assistant and a clerical assistant. Through these various volunteer experiences I have learned leadership skills, flexibility in working with others and the value of service to the community.  Volunteering has allowed me to grow immensely as a person.  I will continue to participate in volunteer opportunities the rest of my life.”

 Bridget is leaving for China right after graduation were she’ll teach English.

 She’ll return in four months in time to start college.

William DaCosta Receives Art Steffen Memorial Scholarship

Art Steffan Scholarship William Decosta

William DaCosta is an extremely cooperative and polite young man who was a solid A/B student at Mt. View.  He managed to complete five courses in one semester, including both Information Systems and Advance Information Systems. Ms. Rock, his teacher, says that William “was adamant about taking the advanced class to increase his computer software knowledge”. Ms. Rock adds that William is a great young man with a lot of potential to be successful in college. William will be continuing his education at Northern Virginia Community College.

Eden Tekola Recieves Art Steffen Citizenship Memorial Scholarship

Art Steffen Memorial Eden Tekola

In the body of her scholarship essay, Eden Tekola wrote “I can’t exactly put into words how much my teachers have changed me for the better, but what I have realized is that teachers have a huge impact on their students’ mindsets.  They can either motivate them or cause them to remain stagnant or degrade them, but what I’ve received and learned here in less than two years was so humbling and encouraging, that even I can observe how much I’ve changed and matured.”

Art Steffen was a tireless ambassador for Mountain View High School.  He truly loved working here and would have been particularly proud to see Eden win a scholarship in his name, knowing how much the school had changed her.  He would have loved having her in class and being part of her metamorphosis.

Eden wrote that Mountain View contributed to her resolve by providing her with the support team she needed.  Art loved being part of that kind of a support team in the classroom and on the playing field.


Congratulations, Eden.

Dibora Eshete receives Art Steffen Memorial Scholarship

Dibora Eshete receives the first Art Steffen Memorial Citizenship Scholarship at Mountain View High School’s mid-year graduation awards ceremony. (From left) Art Steffen’s social studies department colleague at Mountain View Catherine Collins, Dibora Eshete, Bev Steffen and Mackenzie Steffen.

Dibora Eshete believes Mountain View has contributed greatly to her “resolution to succeed.”  The resources provided here, most especially the teachers who work so hard to assist and encourage their students, taught her that goals can be accomplished and obstacles overcome.  It was the teachers who sometimes behaved like parents who made her understand the importance of investing in the lives of others.  Dibora embodies our motto of “Family, Love, and Respect.”  She often engaged in small acts of kindness on behalf of her fellow students.  As a native speaker of Amharic and a successful English language learner, she helped level 1 ESOL students by providing translation services.  Dibora would often bring her classmates into the Career Center to encourage them to sign up for programs and work on their plans for life after high school. Her desire to help extends to her own career plans.  After completing a biology degree at NOVA, she hopes to transfer to University of Virginia to study Public Health Administration. “After I finish,” Dibora explained in her scholarship essay,” I will go back to my home country and help people who are suffering from different diseases.”  As Mr. Todd observes, Dibora has been a superstar at Mountain View.  We believe she will continue to shine as she begins the next step in her education.

Caitlin Schneiderman


Caitlin Schneiderman, Class of 2001

I have such wonderful memories of my days at Mountain View. It was the first time in my life that I felt understood and respected by my teachers. I was finally learning because I was being taught with passion and compassion. I loved Mountain View and Mountain View loved me. I even got to play guitar at my own graduation!

 A few of my classmates and I were encouraged to apply for the scholarship and although it was offered to me, I wanted my friends to have it. For a few of them, it would determine whether they would continue their education, and I had already chosen Shepherd University for my undergraduate studies in poetry and english. 

But it was at Mountain View where I found my first piece of “free poetry” taped to the hallway wall. I eventually decided to turn my love of writing and music into a career. I am currently a self-employed guitar instructor, singer songwriter and performer. Mountain View recently re-opened it’s beautiful, old auditorium doors to me and my photographer to take professional photos for my brand new website! (

I would not have my strong sense of self had it not been for the extraordinary administrators and teachers at Mountain View High School allowing me to be the one who defined that. I am forever grateful to them for this and so much more.


Karla Bolanos

Karla Bolanos, June, 2014

To My Angels,

Thank you so much for giving me this opportunity.  Your help has been invaluable to me and I don’t know how I would have managed without your help and support.  I sincerely appreciate your generosity.

You have inspired me to work on my new projects and follow my dreams.  I’d like to say to all my supporters, thanks for believing in me.  And to all my doubters, thank you very much because you guys have also pushed me.

I have learned to put my heart, mind and soul into even your smallest acts.  This is the secret of success.

Thank you again for the opportunity to win this scholarship and get further education.  I now want to study Child Psychology/Social Work.  I am not worried anymore because I know I have the money to do it.  I will eternally be thankful with God for putting you guys in my path.

Being part of Mountain View has been a pleasure.  If it wasn’t because of that, I wouldn’t have gotten my scholarships or I wouldn’t have graduated in the first place.  Thank you to every single one of you again.

Abdul Mirza


Abdul Mirza, Class of 1998

Abdul has been working overseas for the Department of Defense as a contractor supporting the US Military, NATO forces and civilians for the past few years. He is currently in Qatar, but supporting Afghanistan and is the Information Assurance Security Officer for the entire country.

Previously, he was employed by a Government contracting firm as a Senior Manager for their Intelligence, Civil and National Security Programs. He was also responsible for several business development projects within the firm.

“After graduating from Mountain View High School in 1998, I studied at Northern Virginia Community College and received an Associate in Applied Science degree in Business Management. I transferred to George Mason University and pursued a Bachelors degree. I received my Bachelor of Science Degree from Strayer, Cum Laude, in Information Systems, Networking and subsequently a Master of Science Degree in Computer Security Management. I have been a member of two national honor societies, Alpha Chi National College Honor Society and Alpha Sigma Premier National Honor Society. During the course of my studies, I made the Dean’s list numerous times.”

Eric Schulte


Eric Schulte, Class of 2007

A June 2007 graduate of Mountain View and recipient of the Centreville Community Foundation Scholarship through Mountain View High School Foundation, Inc., Eric Schulte went on to attend Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. Eric also represented the Mountain View family and Rose-Hulman IT abroad when studying 11 months in Stuttgart, Germany his junior year.

Eric received a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering, with double minors in German and Computer Science, and a Technical Translator’s Certificate.

Reflecting on his time at Mountain View, Mr. Schulte says “brings much emotion and joy.”

“I enjoyed the tight-knit family feel of the school, and that was what drove me to attend a small, private, engineering school, Rose-Hulman.”

Summing up his experience at Mountain View, Eric admits, is “a rather tall order.”

“Perhaps one message that propelled me through my troubles in high school and beyond, to where I am today, is a W. Clement Stone quotation: ‘Success is achieved and maintained by those who try and keep trying.’

“Knowing and trusting in yourself can help you conquer seemingly insurmountable goals.”

Eric is currently employment with Texas Instruments in Dallas, Texas.

Daniel Winters


Daniel is currently working as a Multimedia Production Specialist for Fairfax County Public Schools (the least likely place you would expect for me to work if you knew me prior to attending Mountain View). I earned an Associate Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Visual Communication, a Bachelors Degree of Visual Communication with a concentration in Digital Design, become a certified Personal Fitness Trainer, and am currently enrolled in the New York Institute of Photography’s distance learning program to become a certified Professional Photographer. By aggressively pursuing my education, I have also been able to open my own freelance businesses for graphic design and photography:
I am still located in Fairfax County for the time being.

Mountain View taught me to value my education. Unlike traditional high schools, Mountain View gave up all of the overbearing restrictions and controls to give students the freedom and comfort to learn. Teachers were primarily focused on helping students become successful.

I also learned something about people. Well, I guess that is a little unfair… I learned something about human nature… Still pretty unfair… I learned something about the nature of some very rare and special people. There we go!

After attending a traditional high school where the teachers seem to be cold towards most of their students, I found Mountain View to be an absolute shock. Teachers actively sought out a school in which they could change and enhance students’ lives. High school already seems to have been so long ago, but unlike students from a traditional high school, I take my high school experience with me where ever I go and keep it close to my heart. I truly feel that without the faculty and staff of the Class of 2005, I may have been lost to a life of dissatisfaction.

Christopher Thuot


Congratulations to Christopher Thuot (Mountain View Class of 2009), a United States Marine, who grew up in Virginia Run in Centreville, VA and was recently selected as the Marine of the Quarter for Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron 22, located in Jacksonville, North Carolina. Lance Corporal Thuot, a MV-22 Osprey Airframes Mechanic, was nominated for this honor due to his superior job proficiency, work ethic, maturity and sustained performance. He competed in a competition against several of his peers and was evaluated on his basic military subject knowledge, personal appearance and military presence. As a result of his selection, Lance Corporal Thuot will receive a Certificate of Commendation from the Commanding Officer, a Certificate of Achievement from the Noncommissioned Officers Association and Marine Corps Association as well as a book, commemorative plaque and a 72 hour pass. Lance Corporal Thuot is the son of Pierre and Cheryl Thuot and the brother of Danielle Thuot.