Scholar-athlete awards up for grabs

Danielle Hamilton, Sports Editor

scholarships-signBy Sports Editor: Danielle Hamilton

It’s about that time of the year where seniors are beginning to plan their future and apply for colleges. One major thing that worries many students and their parents is how they are going to pay for it.

Students often turn to scholarships to help pay for their college expenses. MHSAA (Michigan High School Athletic Association) offers a scholarship specifically to athletes. This year will be the 25th year that Farm Bureau Insurance has sponsored the MHSAA’s Scholar-Athlete Award, according to the MHSAA website.

The scholarships are $1,000 and 32 of them will be given out. There are four important requirements that must be met to be eligible for this award. They are the following: you must be enrolled and participating in interscholastic athletics at an MHSAA member school; you must be a senior graduating during the 2013-2014 school year; you must have a varsity letter in a sport prior to senior year; and you must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

The applications are judged by four main categories. The essay is 40%, the extra-curricular activities form is 30%, short-answer questions are 20%, and letters of recommendation are 10%.

The website offers other advice:  check with your school’s athletic director to see if you have been nominated for the award; make contact with two people who will write your letters of recommendation; make sure to edit your essay; do not handwrite any part of your application; and turn in your package to your school by the deadline.

Individual schools have their own deadlines for the application set sometime in November. By early February, the 32 scholarship winners will be chosen. The winners will be notified in mid-February. They will also be recognized at the class C boys’ basketball finals.

Scholarships are made to help students attend college. Student athletes who will be playing a college sport may especially need scholarships to be able to attend the school they wish to play for.

“I think these scholarships are extremely important for our students and student-athletes. There are many different scholarships out there if you look. Any assistance a student can get when it comes to their education is invaluable,” says Dan Hutchenson, the athletic director at Howell High School.