Mille Lacs County Times

Posted: 2/28/08

Milaca Scholarship
Foundation opportunities

By Julie Karels
Milaca High School

Milaca High School seniors are some of the most fortunate public school students in the state. They have a tradition of a dedicated group of volunteers in the Milaca community whose only purpose is to further the students' chances of success as they set out to achieve their dreams and impact our world.

Established in 1987, the Milaca Scholarship Foundation's goal has been to provide scholarship opportunities for MHS graduates as they go on to post-secondary institutions of their choice whether it be universities, colleges, business, vocational or trade schools.

Since then, the Milaca Scholarship Foundation has awarded in excess of $724,000 to over 970 Milaca High School graduates. These are your children, neighbors, relatives, and friends.

For many MHS students, this scholarship will play a critical part in their post-high school educational choice. The continued rising cost of tuition has forced all families to more closely examine their financial situation.

Every year the Milaca Scholarship Foundation has a major fund raiser: The Ultra Golf Classic, dinner, and auction held at the Milaca Golf Club in mid-September. Community people, parents, and past recipients are asked to participate in and/or contribute prizes or cash donations for this annual event. All proceeds go directly to future scholarships.

Money is disbursed on quality of application and availability of funds.

Scholarship applications are now available for students at the MHS Student Services Office. They need to be completed and submitted by March 15.

The process that the Milaca Scholarship Foundation uses to evaluate the scholarship applications is uniquely non-discriminating.

When the Milaca Scholarship Foundation's evaluation committee reviews applications, all names and references to the individual are removed.

Grade point average and class standing are only a part of what the committee examines. The applicant is also evaluated on school, church, or community involvement.

Another important aspect of the application is the ability for the student to indicate a clearly thought-out plan for his or her future career goals.

The evaluation committee evaluates each section of the application by awarding points. The points are then added together, giving each applicant a total score ranking.

Students may receive scholarships from any other source without affecting their Milaca Scholarship Foundation application. However, they are limited to only one scholarship from the Milaca Scholarship Foundation.

The Milaca Scholarship Foundation is a subsidiary of Scholarship America, the largest high school scholarship serving organization in America.

All contributions received by the Milaca Scholarship Foundation are returned directly back to our students.

The Foundation has been supported in the past by donations through estate plans, trusts, or wills. Some people have given "In Memory" contributions when celebrating the life of a loved one.

Others have considered a contribution to reduce tax obligations or capital gain liabilities.

Sometimes employers will match donations.

Our Milaca High School students are a great investment.

The Milaca Scholarship Foundation takes pride in the graduates who have entered all walks of life, from aerospace engineers to doctors to electricians to mechanics.

Many scholarship recipients have written to thank the Milaca Scholarship Foundation for helping them pursue their dreams.

As one past graduate put it: "I give you my sincere thanks for the scholarship I received at graduation. It is a great help in financing my college education. I am paying my own way, so this makes it much easier. Also, I thank all those who participated in the MSF Golf Classic. It is a great feeling that the community I grew up in supports my classmates and me so much! Thanks again."

Anyone in the community wanting to involve themselves in the MSF is asked to contact Thora Allen at 320-983-6211, Jerry Westphal at 320-982-7331, or Larry Karels at 320-294-5561. You can also check the information on the Milaca High School's web page.

With the continued financial support of the Milaca area community, we can serve our youth well into the future with this wonderful scholarship tradition.

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Mille Lacs County Times
225 2nd Street SW
Milaca, MN 56353
Telephone: 320-983-6111 Fax: 320-983-6112