With the costs of higher education these days, every little bit helps. That’s why the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association awarded a total of $29,000 in scholarship money to deserving students in May at this year’s Woodworking Industry Conference in San Antonio.
The scholarship program is sponsored by the organization’s educational foundation, which has a board of trustees that awards scholarships to those who want to study and eventually pursue a career in wood technology and related fields. To date, the scholarship program has provided nearly $300,000 to assist talented students with furthering their education and career goals. This year the board selected 11 high school and college students to receive an award.
Larry Hoffer, WMIA’s newly elected vice president, says the annual scholarship program is designed to help these individuals further their education and then either work in the industry or work for potential customers that are in the industry.
“The awards mostly go to current college students and, in some cases, to high school seniors entering a university or technical program in woodworking,” Hoffer says.
“In the future we’re looking at reshaping our approach to this scholarship program to be sure our information gets to the right schools. As I understand, our education committee did a really targeted effort over the past two years on identifying the technical schools where a bulk of the students who were interested in these scholarships wanted to attend.”
The 2015 scholarship recipients and their schools are:
• Chase Eller of Carrollton, Texas; Pittsburg (Kan.) State University
• Sam Galliart of Hutchinson, Kan.; Pittsburg State (Kan.) University
• Jonathan Hamilton of Carrollton, Texas; Pittsburg State (Kan.) University
• Tyler Johnson-Konst of Salem, Ore.; North Salem High School
• Tyler Knobbe, of North Branch, Minn.; Hennepin Technical College
• Avenue Meyers of Salem, Ore.; North Salem High School
• Caitlyn Moss of Cleveland Heights, Ohio; Cleveland Institute of Art
• Moriah Ross of Meade, Kan.; Meade High School;
• Ezra Schier of Granton, Wis.; Fox Valley Technical College
• Brett Stickler of Belton, Mo.; Pittsburg (Kan.) State University
• Mark Welle of Milford, Iowa; Pittsburg (Kan.) State University
Funding for the scholarships is obtained through contributions from business groups and individuals in the woodworking industry and the International Woodworking Fair. Contributions can be accepted at any time in any amount and are tax deductible.
The WMIA is a trade association representing importers and distributors of woodworking machinery and ancillary equipment in North America. For information, visit www.wmia.org.
This article originally appeared in the July 2015 issue.