Holdingford Scholarship Endowment Fund Supports Record Number of Students

Community-led endowment gives scholarship to 26 high school graduates

Holdingford, Minn. (June 7, 2021) – The Holdingford Scholarship Endowment Fund announced that it has awarded 26 Holdingford High School seniors $500 scholarships for their continued education. This is nearly twice as many scholarships as HSEF awarded in 2020. Nathan Sowada, a scholarship recipient, was also awarded a new $1,000 scholarship endowed by the Lane family for a student pursuing a career in the trades. 

Scholarships are awarded based on the applicant’s school and community involvement, leadership skills, and post-secondary education plans. The graduates and their post-secondary schools are:

  • Dalton Brinkman, Minnesota State University Moorhead
  • Brooke Fiedler, University of Minnesota
  • Matthew Fiedler, St. Cloud State University
  • Rylee Friedrich, St. Cloud State University
  • Kendra Gerads, St. Cloud Technical and Community College
  • Rebekah Gerads, College of St. Benedict
  • Lydia Hoikka, Minnesota State University Mankato
  • Michael Holz, University of North Dakota
  • Kendra Kuklok, North Dakota State University
  • Arianna Larson, Northwest Technical College
  • Jenna Lawin, Central Lakes College
  • Danielle Lyon, Concordia College
  • Theresa Meier, College of St. Benedict
  • Emily Miller, Minnesota State University Moorhead
  • Triston Mrosla, Undecided
  • Paige Paulzine, Minnesota State University Mankato
  • Josephine Philippi, Joseph’s School of Cosmetology
  • Janessa Rudolph, St. Cloud Technical and Community College
  • Brandyn Scegura, North Dakota State University
  • Adam Schloemer, University of Minnesota Duluth
  • Ari Schmidt, University of Northwestern St. Paul
  • Mikaela Soltis, Ridgewater College
  • Nathan Sowada, St. Cloud Technical and Community College
  • Carissa Stark, College of St. Scholastica
  • Carter Wuebkers, North Dakota State University
  • Kaylee Yamry, Alexandria Technical and Community College

“Even during an unusual fundraising year like 2020, generous community members and alums supported our seniors,” said Kelly Boeckermann, chair of the HSEF board. “Scholarship recipients tell us they’re grateful for these scholarships that allow them to focus on school and worry less about student loans. We’re thrilled to award more scholarships than ever before.”

The Holdingford Scholarship Endowment aims to eventually award every qualified graduate with a scholarship for their future education. Led by a board of dedicated community members and Holdingford High School alumni, the Endowment raises funds and pays out a portion of the invested funds in scholarships each year.

Here are some of the 2021 HSEF scholarship recipients!

About The Holdingford Scholarship Endowment
Created by community members and Holdingford High School alumni in 2013, the vision of the Holdingford Scholarship Endowment is to provide a scholarship for every student graduating from Holdingford High School. The Endowment is a Partner Fund of the Initiative Foundation, led by a board of volunteers who ensure a permanent, self-sustaining source of support for graduates. Funds are raised through events and individual, business, and organizational donations. To learn more or to make a donation, visit http://holdingfordscholarship.org/.

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Scholarship Application

2021 Scholarship Application is Now Open!

We are now accepting applications for our 2021 round of Holdingford Endowment scholarships! Any 2021 Holdingford graduate who is planning on any type of post-secondary education may apply.

24 $500 scholarships will be awarded to those pursuing a higher education (any kind, including trades)

1 $1,000 scholarship will be award to a student pursuing a trade occupation

Holdingford seniors should see Google Classroom for the link or go here and click on Local Scholarships. The deadline to apply is Friday, April 2!

Important things to remember…

  • Fill out the form completely.
  • Scholarships are awarded based on extra-curricular activities, jobs, volunteer activities, and the quality of essays.
  • You must graduate from Holdingford High School to be eligible.
  • Last year we had more scholarships to give away than the number of students who applied. Don’t leave money on the table!

Thank you to community members, alums, local businesses, civic organizations and dedicated advisory board members for supporting Holdingford students!

Scholarship Spotlight: Brooke Catton

Sometimes a Holdingford graduate knows exactly what they want to study and pursue for a career. That was the case for Brooke Catton, who earned a Holdingford Scholarship Endowment award when she graduated in 2019.

“During my freshman hear of high school, I attended a Society of Women Engineers event and fell in love with engineering,” said Brooke, who is now studying mechanical engineering and peace engineering at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. “I have always loved math, science, and figuring out how things work. I chose to attend St. Thomas because  they have a very strong engineering program, as well as a beautiful campus. When I visited, it felt like it was a community that I would fit into and have many opportunities to meet many new people.”

The cost of college is significant, and Brooke currently works in the athletic department at St. Thomas and is part of the event staff where she helps manage athletic events on campus. She also explained how the Holdingford Scholarship Endowment helped ease some of that stress. “The scholarship has helped me pursue my educational goals by helping with the cost of college. I put it towards by my tuition for classes.”

Brooke’s advice for high school students is to take the time to figure out what to do and not worry about following someone else’s timeline. “It’s okay if you want to take a gap year. It’s okay if you don’t want to go to college. It’s okay if you do want to go to college but are undecided on a major,” she said.

If a student does attend college, take the time to explore new things. “Going to college gives you the opportunity to figure out who you are and what you want to do with your life, so try as many things as possible,” she continued. “That being said, don’t overwork yourself or over-commit to a whole bunch of clubs. Find a few clubs or organizations that you feel are important to you and make an effort to go to those meetings. This is a great way to meet so many people.”

To support future Holdingford grads like Brooke, make a contribution to the Holdingford Scholarship Endowment!

Scholarship Spotlight: Jacob Wolter

The Holdingford Scholarship Endowment provides scholarships to graduating Holdingford seniors who spread out around the world to pursue their studies and interests. We caught up with a recent grad to hear about his post-high school experience and how the Holdingford community has supported him.

A 2019 graduate, Jacob Wolter now studies composite material engineering at Winona State University, and is very happy with his post-secondary education experience so far. “I really love the Winona area and atmosphere,” he says. “I also really like math and science, and I chose to go into engineering because it encompasses both.”

Upon graduation, Jacob earned a scholarship from the Endowment and immediately put it to good use.  “The Holdingford Endowment Scholarship has allowed me to focus more on my studies and be successful,” he says. Jacob is earning money other ways as well, notably as a seasonal laborer for the Stearns County Highway Department.

Jacob’s advice for current high school students is a good balance of responsibility and exploration: “Remember to get your schoolwork done, but try and have as much fun as possible,” he says, adding that this advice carries forward to college. “College is quite a bit of work, but it’s also a lot of fun, too.”

To support future Holdingford grads like Jacob, make a contribution to the Holdingford Scholarship Endowment!

Holdingford Scholarship Endowment

Scholarship Spotlight: Bridget Catton

The Holdingford Endowment Scholarship allows me to focus more on getting an education rather than worrying about how to pay for it. That’s the sentiment we wear time and again from our scholarship recipients who are living their lives across the globe, and it’s what we heard from 2019 Holdingford graduate Bridget Catton.

“This scholarship has helped me by allowing me to focus more on college than worrying about money for tuition,” she told us. “I will have to focus more on money and working throughout the next few years, but this scholarship helped allow me to enjoy my first year of college and experience what it’s like in a new environment and setting.”

Bridget is studying elementary education with a middle school math endorsement at the University of Northwestern in St. Paul. “I chose elementary education because I love to work with children and help them learn. I have always had a passion for school and learning, and have been blessed with some outstanding role models in the teachers I have had. I also enjoy math, and I wanted to be able to teach both. Northwestern gave me that opportunity with the math endorsement.”

While scholarships partially help with tuition costs, Bridget still used her strong work ethic to earn money working at sporting events and theater performances on campus. She has work lined up for next year and plans to be a Resident Assistant in the dorms.

To recent Holdingford graduates and seniors, Bridget recommends being smart and careful with money. “Work a lot in the summer before you go to college and don’t spend lots of money,” she advises. “Saving money before you get to college will help a lot…once there, manage your time wisely because you will have lots of down time but that can be spent doing homework. And lastly, it’s alright if you need to take a day to yourself and just relax. College can become very challenging if you do not take a break and give yourself some ‘me’ time.”

Bridget went on to thank the Holdingford community for all of the support as she transitioned to her post-secondary education plans. “I want to thank the community for all they have provided for Holdingford seniors, especially when it comes to scholarships. Scholarships help tremendously and are extremely beneficial, so thank you!”

To support future Holdingford grads like Bridget, make a contribution to the Holdingford Scholarship Endowment!