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The Superior High School class of 2013 throw their caps in the air after graduating in June. (Jed Carlson/jcarlson@superiortelegram.com)

Scholarships available to those who apply

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Last spring, Superior High School students were awarded scholarships totaling nearly half a million dollars. This year’s seniors can reap similar benefits. But there’s a catch.

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“You cannot get a scholarship if you don’t apply,” said Nancy Pedersen, executive director of the School District of Superior Scholarship Foundation.

Time is running out to apply for about 134 scholarships, including new funds in honor of educators George R. Austreng and Eleanor Tempelis Austreng, BMO Harris Bank and the Jewson family.

“We try to give out every scholarship we have,” Pedersen said. “Last year every student who applied for a scholarship got one or more.” But not every gift was awarded.

A scholarship earmarked for a student entering the cosmetology course at Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College, for example, went unclaimed.

“That’s why it’s so important, no matter what the student is going into, that they apply,” Pedersen said.

Information on the wide array of scholarships is available at the Superior High School counselor’s office and the school’s website, superiorhigh.superior.schoolfusion.us, on the counseling page. The folder on scholarships, near the bottom of the page, also includes a downloadable application, timetable and checklist as well as a list of scholarships offered by individuals and businesses that aren’t managed through the foundation.

The deadline to apply for all foundation scholarships except the Nelson, Hendrickson, McLean and O’Hara is March 24. A single general scholarship application is needed to apply for all the available awards.

Pedersen said filling out the application should take about 20 minutes, and could net seniors anywhere from $200 to thousands of dollars.

The non-foundation scholarships have deadlines ranging from Oct. 4 to May 15 and require separate applications.

Last year’s seniors were awarded 134 foundation scholarships totaling $272,000 and an additional $200,000 was awarded for renewable scholarships to previous classes. In all, $472,000 went to further Superior students’ futures.

“It sure says great things about the way the Superior residents, former residents and businesses support education,” Pedersen said.

Every year, new scholarships are offered through the foundation. Some are in memory of former educators and students, veterans and volunteers. Others are offered by a graduating class, business or organization.

“When I started as executive director in 2007 we had 122 scholarships, now we have 134,” Pedersen said. “But we have added $1.5 million to our scholarship fund since 2007.” The majority of scholarships are perpetual, handing out interest money each year while retaining the principal amount. Others are one-time gifts of money, with scholarships handed out until the cash is gone.

“Any amount is important,” Pedersen said.

Each donor can choose up to three different criteria for the scholarship recipient(s), from where they attend college to their major, grade point average or extracurricular activities. Although donors can set criteria, a committee from the high school formed of teachers, a counselor, the principal and an assistant principal makes the decision on who will receive them. Awards will be announced in early May, Pedersen said.

A little more than 300 students graduated from the high school in 2013, and 134 of them earned scholarships.

“We want, as a foundation, to be able to give every student who applies for a scholarship at least one,” Pedersen said. It’s a compliment to them, a pat on the back and an investment in their future.

Anyone interested in setting up a scholarship can contact the district office at 715-394-8700 and ask for the district administrator’s office. More information on the foundation is available at www.superior.k12.wi.us.

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Maria Lockwood
(715) 395-5025
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