By Dede McClure
Special to the Rappahannock News
As 2019 dawns, hundreds of Rappahannock area high school seniors face a certain truth: graduation is just down the road. And if they have chosen to continue their education, they face another truth: college isn’t far off — and neither is the reality of figuring out how to pay for it. Help is available, but college-bound seniors need to ask for it — by applying for scholarships!
Recognizing that many students forego a college education given the cost, the Northern Piedmont Community Foundation (NPCF) remains focused on expanding its scholarships — including renewable funds — to local youth. It has a success story that merits boasting.
In 2017, NPCF managed 27 separate funds and awarded more than $133,000 to college-bound seniors. Just a year later, it added several new funds, including a vocational and technical education scholarship. It also nearly doubled its award total to $256,750, which contained $72,500 in first-time renewable scholarships. The 2019 scholarship application season launched on December 21, and applicants (and their parents) should be excited by the possibilities!
Let’s take look at the options in Rappahannock County (award amounts vary if not listed):
Mary Beth Williams Memorial Scholarship: Established in memory of a woman who was interested in higher education and agriculture, this fund benefits qualified applicants who demonstrate financial need, with preference given to applicants who are majoring in agriculture or a related field of study, and/or are active participants in the Rappahannock 4-H program.
Lois R. Snead Arts & Crafts Scholarship Fund: Qualified candidates must demonstrate a commitment to a field in arts and/or crafts, have some community service experience, and possess an academic record that displays initiative. Priority is given to first-generation students who demonstrate financial need and are recommended by their art teacher.
RMD Open Scholarship: This scholarship benefits qualified candidates of any age who are pursuing training certificate studies at a community college, technical training center, or RappU, to enhance their career development. Applicants must demonstrate financial need and a commitment to their chosen field of study.
Vocational and Technical Education Scholarship ($3,000 renewable award): This scholarship benefits applicants pursuing a degree, certificate, or credential in a vocational, technical, or trade education program, including, but not limited to: automotive technology, welding, industrial maintenance, commercial truck driving, masonry, carpentry, HVAC, plumbing, or diesel and heavy equipment repair.
Scholarships available to Rappahannock public school students:
Cooley, Dearing and Rinker Foundation Scholarship: Qualified applicants must show a desire and aptitude to succeed in their college career and demonstrate financial need.
Northern Piedmont Community Foundation Music Scholarship ($12,000 for four years or $6,000 for two years): Qualified candidates must intend to seek a degree in Music at an accredited two- or four-year institution, as well as be well-rounded and display initiative, motivation, and leadership. They will compete at an audition held in the spring of their senior year.
Pauline H. Bruce Memorial Scholarship (one $1,000 award): This scholarship honors Pauline Bruce, a woman who taught for more than 40 years. Qualified candidates must demonstrate a desire and aptitude to succeed in their college career.
St. Luke’s Foundation Scholarship (up to three renewable awards of $1,000–$2,000 each): Qualified candidates should have a minimum GPA of 3.0, demonstrate good academic standing, have community service experience, and possess an academic record that displays leadership and initiative. Successful applicants must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 in college.
The deadline for all Northern Piedmont Community Foundation applications is March 15 by 11:59 p.m. Award selections are made in April, and scholarship recipients are notified in May. To learn more or start an application, visit www.npcf.org/scholarship.