Meet The 2018 CHQScholars

Alyssa Davenport-Herbst, from San Angelo, Texas, is a recent graduate of Angelo State University where she majored in Physics and minored is Philosophy, Math and Political Science. Alyssa served as secretary for the Society of Physics Students, where she showed hundreds of youngsters how much fun can be found in science. She was also a member of the Philosophy Club and Sigma Pi Sigma. Alyssa played a major role in an interdisciplinary team designing and constructing a water filter system for a group of internally displaced people in Medellin, Colombia, while at the same time teaching science to the local children. This water project involved research which resulted Alyssa’s building and testing of a scale water filter model, including printing and incorporating 3D-printed objects into the model. A second-generation CHQScholars, she enjoys playing tabletop games, analyzing media, and discussing philosophy. Alyssa is looking forward to learning, meeting new people, and growing in faith here at Chautauqua and is a recipient of the Texas Branch Scholarship.


David Hidi is 19 years old and lives in Nagydobrony, Ukraine. He is studying English language and literature at Fernc Rakoczi II Transcarpathian Hungarian Institute, speaks Hungarian, English and a bit of Ukrainian and is interested in learning more languages as well as different accents. David just completed his second year of college where he is an active member of the Student’s Union as well as a member of the college volleyball and soccer teams. His hobbies include hiking, reading action books and hanging out with friends. David is a member of Transcarpathian Christian Youth Organization and participants in the Ukrainian Summer Mission Program. He is also a member of the Transcarpathian Hungarian Cultural Society. Coming to America is a dream come true for David and he is looking forward to meeting new people, experiencing different cultures while learning more and strengthening his faith in God.


Ricardo Jbeily, 19 years old, comes from Lebanon where he serves as a Scout Chief and mentor to 30 boys aged from 12 to 17 years old. “There are five goals of scouting: personal, physical, manual, social and spiritual development. Being involved has taught me leadership skills, to believe in GOD, how to communicate with different kinds of people while debating a certain subject or planning an event, to enjoy the little things, to be always thankful for what you have, to be creative and give all your potential to help and teach others.” Ricardo studies architecture at Notre Dame University Zouk Mosbeh. “I’m interested in seeing buildings or houses with creative architecture. That inspires my interest and creativity.” He loves camping, hiking and rugby. “It’s like a break from the reality when I’m in the woods far away from the noise of the city. I relax when I go for hiking is like a meditation for me.” Having traveled to Canada and Dubai, he loves discovering new cultures and new ways of thinking. Ricardo speaks Arabic, English and French.


Eszter Kucsinka, 20 years old, lives in Ukraine, and is a 3rd year student of the Ferenc Rakoczi II Transcarpathian Hungarian Institute where she is studying English Language and Literature. Following graduation, she plans to continue her studies on International Relations in Hungary. Eszter speaks Hungarian, English, Ukrainian and a little bit of German. Eszter is a member of the KRISZ, which is a Christian organization, planning events for youth in Transcarpathia, (Ukraine). She also works as a youth group leader, and a Sunday school teacher in her village. For four years, Eszter served as a volunteer in a Gipsy Mission where she taught English to children as well as Bible stories. Eszter’s hobbies include reading, travelling, listening to music, watching good movies and painting. She is so grateful to be a member of the Chautauqua Scholarship Program: “I love to travel, to meet new people, and the greatest thing about that is how we can share our world views and most importantly the way we experience God.”


Alanna McLelland has completed the Office Administration Program at Algonquin College and will be completing her Early Childhood Education program by May 2019. She is currently working at an After-School Program with students grade 1-6 where she has discovered her passion of working with children and one day hopes to teach in a JK, SK or Grade 1 Classroom. As she works toward these goals, she will continue to pursue her hobbies in swimming, pottery, cooking, Zumba and traveling. In 2017 Alanna went on a three-week travel adventure in Europe. She is excited to continue exploring the world and for her next journey she will be following in her Father and Grandmother’s footsteps by being a Chautauqua Scholarship Student. Isaiah 40:31 is a verse that has great meaning for Alanna – “those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Alanna expects her Chautauqua experience will renew and strengthen her faith.


Haley Quinton is a fiction writer, originally from Paducah, Kentucky, and currently living in Memphis, Tennessee. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Western Kentucky University, and is currently pursuing her Master of Fine Arts from the University of Memphis. Her writing can be found in Zephyrus Literary Magazine, Adelaide Literary Magazine, and the University of Memphis Magazine. She is currently working on a short story collection about an eccentric family in the South. Haley is currently the Managing Editor of The Pinch Literary Journal, a literary magazine from the University of Memphis that publishes two issues a year. Prior to her current position, she has also served as Marketing Director and Fiction Editor. A member of Kingsway Baptist Church, Haley sings alto in the chancel choir, and is an active participant in Meals on Wheels and Room in the Inn, a homeless ministry. She also enjoys art museums, gardens, classical music concerts, plays the piano and loves playing with her dog, Ziva.


Tracy Abou Saab, from Lebanon, is currently studying Political Science at the Notre Dame University but plans to transfer to the study of Architecture. She is active in the Creative Commons Society and The Club of International Relations at Notre Dame. Scouting has been a great part of Tracy’s life and has played a major role in shaping her personality. She is currently a Scout Chief responsible for 30 Scout Cubs, ages 8 – 12 years old. In 2016, Tracy traveled to Krakow, Poland for World Youth Days meeting people from around the world and experiencing different cultures. Tracy considers volunteering as an important social and altruistic action and her dreams include working as a volunteer with the United Nations. She is motivated, ambitious, outgoing and strives for new adventures, especially spiritual ones and the CHQScholars Program seems a good opportunity. Tracy enjoys reading, drawing, playing the piano, hiking and camping. She also is comfortable in speaking and understanding Arabic, English and French.


Adam Shaffer, a native of Parkersburg, West Virginia, attended Fairmont State University where he received a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education. While obtaining his Bachelor’s Degree, he also obtained an Associate Degree in American Sign Language Interpreting. He currently teaches second grade at a local elementary school and loves every minute of it. Adam is near completion of a Master’s in Special Education from Marshall University. This will allow him to work with children who are deaf and hard of hearing. Service projects for Adam include organizing and packing meals for students during the recent West Virginia Teachers Work Stoppage. At his church, Adam has also served as a teacher for Vacation Bible School. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, training his dogs, listening to music, playing tennis, and taking photos. Adam is appreciative to be given this opportunity to be a part of the CHQScholars Program. He looks forward to meeting new people, learning about other cultures, and strengthening his relationship with Christ.


Zoltán Tóth is 21 years old and comes to Chautauqua from Transcarpathia, Ukraine, where he has recently graduated from the Ferenc Rakoczi II Transcarpathian Hungarian Institute with a degree in English Language and Literature. Zoltan speaks Hungarian, English and a bit of German. His favorite hobbies are table tennis, football, watching movies and serials. Game of Thrones and Vikings are two of his favorites. He is a member of the Carpathian Hungarian Cultural Association (KMKSZ). The goal of KMKSZ is to advocate, preserve and cultivate the culture, national traditions and mother tongue of the Hungarian culture in the territory of Ukraine beyond the Carpathian Mountains. This organization also helps in the establishment of churches and private education center. Zoltan has always wanted to come to America and this program is providing the opportunity.



Zeina Yazbeck, graduated in 2016 with a Pharmaceutical Degree from the Lebanese University. Presently she is pursuing a Master’s in Research. She manages her time between studies and working in a community pharmacy. “Dealing with patients, knowing their illness and trying to help them is the best part of my job.” Her passion to help others started very early in life, when she became a member of the Scouts of Lebanon. In one of her several leadership positions, she was responsible for 30 boys ages 8 to12 years old. “This experience was one of my best since dealing with this age is so critical. Helping in their growth and their thinking is a very important achievement in my life.” Zeina speaks Arabic, French and English. She expects her time at Chautauqua will provide opportunities for growing spiritually and gaining courage to face future fears and challenges in life.



Elizabeth Waters, 2018 CHQScholars Coordinator, is a senior at West Virginia University, planning to graduate in May 2019 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice. While maintaining a successful academic record, Elizabeth has worked in several different types of jobs. Her entrepreneurial skills are evident as her hobby of creating jewelry has become a small business. Elizabeth spends most of her free time with her family. “I enjoy being outdoors whether it is exploring my beautiful state or just relaxing in a hammock. I also really enjoy photography and the arts.” Based on her experience as a member of the 2016 Class of CHQScholars, Elizabeth says,” Not only is Chautauqua a wonderful place to physically be, but a wonderful place spiritually and mentally as well. There is so much to learn here. In my experience as a Scholar, I not only learned more about God and heard incredible sermons, but had my entire perspective changed. I found lifelong friends among my fellow Scholars as well as members of the Chautauqua and IOKDS community. This program is by far one of the best experiences of my life and taught me to show God’s goodness through fellowship with my community as well as to never stop learning. One of the reasons I love Chautauqua so much because it is a beautiful place to explore. One of my favorite things to do while at Chautauqua was to sit on the docks listening and watching the water. This included some stargazing as well. Through this taking time to reflect on what I had learned and experienced that day, I found a great sense of peace. I am really looking forward to being part of this amazing program again and I hope the Scholars of the 2018 program find both peace and adventure at Chautauqua.”


Meet the 2018 CHQScholars Program Staff

Vicki Carter has served as Director of the Chautauqua Scholarship Program since 2015. During her tenure, 45 young adults from the United States, Canada, Lebanon, Ukraine, Hungary and Palestine have participated in this program. She has shared this experience with her husband, Ron.

A native of Tupelo, Mississippi, Vicki received formal training in classical piano, but her career path led to a successful career in musical theatre. Her Broadway debut was as conductor of EUBIE!, a revue based on the music of Eubie Blake, an American Ragtime composer.

Vicki graduated from The University of Southern Mississippi with a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance and in 2016 was inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame at the University.

In 2000, Vicki was named one of 56 Charter Nominees for induction into the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame and was profiled in Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame: Legendary Musicians Whose Art Has Changed the World.

Vicki is a member of Morrow Memorial United Methodist Church in Maplewood, New Jersey. She served as member of the Board of Trustees for MEND, (Meeting Emergency Needs with Dignity) a network of food pantries in Essex County, New Jersey. For MEND she has organized food drives, a casserole ministry for a homeless shelter, pillowcase-making events for a women and children’s shelter, an underwear drive and back-to-school-supplies drives just to mention a few.

Presently Vicki and Ron reside in East Orange, New Jersey. Their daughter, Logan, lives in New York City.

Ron Carter by listening to Vicki with her “Just Say, Yes!” policy has had many wonderful experiences working with this program. His favorite aspects of program include Ron’s Daily Tips from the daily schedule, enjoying conversations over dinner and on the porches and helping to cook and grill for the Scholars! He is proud to have assisted in designing and executing new landscaping at all four IOKDS properties that are low maintenance using existing plants and shrubs.

Ron’s 40-year career in Human Resources, Executive Coaching and designing corporate feedback systems includes Chase Manhattan Bank, Banker’s Trust Company and Merck and Company. Consulting clients include: Coach, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, Major League Baseball and Dow Jones/Factiva. This career allowed him to experience people and cultures of 23 countries.

He grew up in Ellisville, Mississippi, attended the University of Southern Mississippi and earned a Master’s in Education from Fordham University.

At home he is the proud tender to The Secret Garden @ 377, an unusual one-acre roof top garden which is a part of Harrison Park Towers where he and Vicki reside. He has raised funds for and managed a major restoration project of this garden since 2009.

Carroll Stribling, a lifetime resident of St. Louis, Missouri, is married to Lulu Stribling and a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, having received a BS/BA Degree and later attended Washington University School of Law in St. Louis receiving a JD degree in 1967.

From 1967 until 2006 Carroll conducted a private practice of law in St. Louis primarily engaging in business dispute work – litigation, jury and court trials, mediations, and arbitrations of various business disputes.

Carroll continues to be engaged in civic and charitable endeavors. He has been active in St. George St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, having served on boards of several charities, President of Grace Hill Neighborhood Services – a large network of neighborhood settlement houses in the Hull House tradition, President of The Bach Society of St. Louis – a civic choir and musical organization, and Treasurer of Campbell House Foundation – an historic restored mansion and museum in St. Louis. Presently he serves as a volunteer at Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

Christian service is part of Carroll’s life and a major interest has been mission work in Managua, Nicaragua. In 2000 he created and managed an effort which assisted in the creation, construction and management of two Christian primary schools presently with a total enrollment of 585 students. This has happened by working closely with missionaries in Managua and several other faith-based organizations in St. Louis and throughout the USA. Annual work trips to Managua include from 25 to 50 people of all age levels who do basic construction and maintenance at the schools and outreach with children and patients at local charity hospitals. Carroll organizes fund raising events in St. Louis and projects for securing school supplies.

This is Carroll’s first Chautauqua Experience. “I’m looking forward to meeting the young adults who are participating in the CHQScholars Program and observing their spiritual growth.”

Lulu Stribling and Carroll have two sons and two grandchildren, Lucy (3) and Holden (1).
Lulu’s hometown is Tupelo, Mississippi. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Voice from the University of Southern Mississippi. Following graduation, Lulu pursued a successful performance career in New York City.

Lulu’s business career began at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis where she quickly rose to working in the Corporate Office (Global Account Executive) in Group Sales transitioning through Ritz-Carlton and becoming part of Marriott International. She was awarded “The Timeless Performance” Award from ITA Group in 2009, “Chairman’s Circle” in 2011, 2015 and 2016 “Outstanding Partner of the Year” from MotivAction and “2014 Supplier of the Year” from Maritz Travel. Lulu also served on the Advisory Board of Maritz Travel and One Ten for 11 years.

Lulu served on The SITE International Board of Director from 2009 – 2013. Founded in 1973, the SITE global member community, which represents 84 countries is on a mission to strengthen and inspire this extraordinary incentive travel industry.

In community service, Lulu (and three friends) organized an event supporting the 100 Neediest Cases sponsored by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the local chapter of the United Way. Between 2001 and 2011 this group of friends raised over $65,000 and assisted 40 St. Louis families in having a Christmas they might not have had by purchasing gift cards, paying a month’s rent and / or utilities.

Lulu is an active member of St. Michael and St. George Episcopal Church where she currently serves on The Vestry, The Parish Life Committee, and works to serve the less fortunate through The Shelter Ministry and Heavenly Meals Group. She also works alongside her husband, Carroll, with a mission effort in Nicaragua.