Scholarship awarded to Howell teen

HOWELL — Annalynn Franey, 18, of Howell, received a scholarship from The Seeing Eye for raising several puppies for the dog guide school.

James Kutsch, president of The Seeing Eye, congratulated Franey among the 66 puppy raisers to receive scholarships at Family Day, an annual celebration for puppy raisers and their families held at the Morristown campus on Aug. 20.

Franey is a freshman at Ocean County College, Toms River, where she is studying communications and journalism.

Franey has been a puppy raiser for eight years as a member of a Seeing Eye puppy club. In this capacity, Franey taught her puppies basic obedience, attended local puppy club meetings once a month, exposed puppies to a variety of social situations, and provided them with love and companionship. After 18 months, she returned each puppy to The Seeing Eye for its formal training, according to a press release.

“Young adults like Annalynn are special because they provide a rock-solid foundation for a Seeing Eye dog’s formal training,” said Peggy Gibbon, director of Canine Development for The Seeing Eye. “We are delighted to recognize Annalynn for her dedication to the puppy-raising program and wish her well in her future endeavors.”

“We applaud the extraordinary commitment of Annalynn and her fellow scholarship winners, enabling blind people to lead more independent lives,” said Kutsch.

“Becoming a Seeing Eye puppy raiser has been so rewarding,” Franey said. “The values I have learned from these experiences have taught me the importance of helping out others in need. I learned how small deeds can greatly affect the lives of others.”

Each year, The Seeing Eye recognizes exceptional puppy raisers by presenting them with $1,000 college scholarships. Recipients have raised at least two dogs, have demonstrated a high level of academic achievement and are active in their community, according to the press release.

The Seeing Eye, founded in 1929, has matched 15,000 specially trained dog guides with blind people. Today there are approximately 1,800 active graduates of The Seeing Eye who live and work throughout the world and about 700 Seeing Eye volunteer puppy raisers in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland.

For more information about The Seeing Eye or how to become a puppy raiser, call 973-539-4425, ext. 1769, or visit the Internet website at