Seniors sweep up scholarships
Carbon County seniors awarded more than $3 million
By Trudy Balcom
RAWLINS — Now that the 2015-16 school year is over and graduation parties are winding down, some seniors across Carbon County have solved a major math problem: how to pay for college.
In an era when tuition and student loan debt has skyrocketed, the competition for tuition dollars can be fierce. But students in all of the high schools across Carbon County have competed successfully for scholarship awards — with a total of $3,140,012 awarded to Carbon County seniors this year.
Many scholarships require a GPA of 3.0 or above or require high ACT or SAT exam scores. Some also require that students have taken a certain number of math, English and foreign language classes. Some scholarships are aimed at students with greater financial need.
Rawlins High School
In Rawlins, 42 RHS students were awarded scholarship dollars totaling $555,020.
Many students received multiple awards from different sources. Montana Belford and Austin Tarango received eight awards, Katerra Skinner and Alexander Moore received seven and Courtney Dillworth and Colton Sherman received six awards.
Belford received two scholarships from the University of Sioux Falls, South Dakota — the President’s Scholarship and an athletic scholarship for cross-country and track.
Tarango is enrolled in the University of Wyoming Honors Program and received a Hathaway Honors Scholarship.
Little Snake River Valley School
LSRV seniors netted $132,550 in scholarship funding for nine students.
Braden Duncan received three scholarships from Chadron State College in Chadron, Neb., and Rachel Risner received two scholarships from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla. Lilia Hedges received nine separate awards and Ellie Skalberg received eight.
Carbon County School District No. 1 does not release the dollar values of individual student’s scholarship awards.
Hanna-Elk Mountain-Medicine Bow
Nine students at HEM were awarded a total of $243,530 in scholarship dollars.
Chloe Tolbert and Wyatt Phillips each received full-ride scholarships valued at about $80,000 from the Daniels Fund, which offers scholarships that can be used at any accredited non-profit college or university in the U.S. To be eligible for the scholarship, a student must live in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah or Wyoming.
Encampment High School
Eleven seniors at Encampment High School brought home at total of $415,992 in scholarship funding toward their college and trade school costs.
Cassidy Little received a full-ride Daniels Fund Scholarship as well as eight other scholarships totaling $98,440. Guy Erickson received a University of Wyoming Trustee’s Scholarship valued at $46,272, and eight other scholarship awards. Katlynne Hytrek received 13 different scholarship awards including a $15,000 ProStart Scholarship to the New England Culinary Institute.
Saratoga High School
Twenty-one seniors at Saratoga High School have been awarded an impressive $1,122,296 in scholarship funds. Seven Saratoga students have been awarded over $40,000 in scholarship dollars, including Bradley Bifano, Jessie Black, Cruz Escobedo, Nina Ford, Maddison Sharp, Christian Soles and Thatcher Speiring.
Four of these students (Bifano, Black, Escobedo and Sharp) were recipients of the Olson Family Foundation Scholarship, which offers a full ride to students from Saratoga High School to a college of their choice.
Nina Ford was awarded a stunning total of $633,708 in scholarship dollars from four colleges and Wyoming’s Hathaway fund. Ford has been offered $192,500 in scholarships from Carleton College, a private four-year college in Minnesota; $196,404 in scholarships from Bard College, a private college in New York; $119,644 from Grinnell College, a private four-year college in Iowa and $111,720 from the University of Denver.
Students in Wyoming have a leg up on college costs over high school grads in other states — the Hathaway Scholarship.
The Hathaway Scholarship, founded in 2006, is funded by a State of Wyoming trust fund and offers assistance to students to attend any Wyoming two-year college or the University of Wyoming. Eligibility is based on performance in high school, ACT scores, and maintaining GPA levels in college and other criteria.
There are three levels of Hathaway funding Opportunity, Performance and Honors, each offers support to students, but not a full ride. A total of 73 students in Carbon County were awarded Hathaway Scholarships, with 35 awarded at RHS, 21 in Saratoga and 11 to Encampment students. Three students each received Hathaway awards at HEM and LSRV.