By Nance Ebert, Contributing Writer
Westborough – LL Cool J’s popular performance show, “Lip Sync Battle,” has nothing on the faculty at the Westborough High School (WHS).
On April 7, the faculty performed live or on video to a packed audience to raise money for the Anne Piscia Memorial Scholarship to be granted to a high school senior.
Piscia was a Westborough resident and beloved teacher for many years. She passed away from her lengthy battle with cancer last spring. While she was ill, Greg Rota and a few other teachers decided to cheer her up by making a lip synch video to the song, “Uptown Funk.” The video helped to lift her spirits, and sparked the idea for this fundraiser.
“This is one way to honor her memory with a scholarship for a senior,” explained WHS English and journalism teacher Kathy Stoker. “She was an incredible person, philanthropist, faculty member and friend and I know she would be thrilled and very touched by the Westborough community and their efforts to have a scholarship named in her honor.”
The Lip Synch Fundraiser Committee is comprised of four teachers: Kathy Stoker, Greg Rota, Joey Teevens and Colleen Gormley. There are about 40 faculty members participating in one way or another. Some are doing the live lip synch acts. Others have created lip synch videos that will be shown. Others are helping out with ticket sales and other duties.
In addition to the many teachers and administrators performing, Superintendent Amber Bock and members of a book club that Piscia was a part of will be performing to the song, “We Are Family.” Some students will also perform as back-up singers.
“I think it’s really about having fun and laughing at ourselves,” Stoker said. “It’s about honoring Anne. She was one of those teachers who was always laughing, dancing and engaging the students and fellow faculty. It’s about having a fun night and keeping Anne in mind.”
A GoFundMe page was set up and raised $1,000 on the first day. Her family is coming up with the criteria for the scholarship and the recipient process along with a Scholarship Committee.
“Anne always wanted a ‘Faculty Follies’-type event,” Rota said. “Since this is a hot television show, we figured it would work. Over $8,000 has been raised.”
The Westborough Student Council will also be donating all of the proceeds from the concessions.
Anyone wishing to contribute to the Anne Piscia Scholarship Fund can do so by going to the GoFundMe page: www.gofundme.com/auwnjzks.