Celina Karp Biniaz ’52 and Sarah Beisner ’22
As a Holocaust survivor, Celina Karp Biniaz ’52 possesses a great deal of resilience. When she was admitted to Grinnell College, she had just three years of formal education.
“I was barely 17 when Grinnell took a chance on me,” says Biniaz. “They gave me a full scholarship, and I’ve always been very grateful to the College for giving me the opportunity and allowing me to move forward with my life. I was helped, and I wanted to help others.”
She recently established the Celina Karp Biniaz ’52 Model of Resilience Award to support a graduating senior who has overcome obstacles to obtain an education. Award recipients pursue a teaching career or other work devoted to the education and welfare of young people.
Sarah Beisner ’22 is the first recipient of the award. Like the prize’s namesake, she has a compelling life story with a demonstrated desire to give back and work for the common good. Beisner is a paralegal at Children’s Rights, a nonprofit law firm in New York City that works on behalf of children in foster care and juvenile detention whose rights have been violated.
“Celina Biniaz is such a special woman who has lived a special life, so to be the first to get the award in her name, I don’t have the words to put to it,” Beisner says. “It makes me doubly committed to the work I want to do.”