INA – Once again, it is time for Rend Lake College to begin receiving applications for one of its most coveted scholarships.
Since the first recipient, Jody Williams in 1998, the Fornear Family Scholarship through Jim and Peg Fornear has been providing a major educational opportunity for RLC graduates in their junior and senior years at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.
Deeply rooted in Sesser, the Fornears created this rewarding opportunity to help their home town people, explained RLC Foundation Chief Executive Officer Pat Kern.
“It started with the intention of helping Sesser residents, Rend Lake College and SIU-C,” she said. “Their intent was to help our graduates finish the next two years beyond RLC, since that can often be a financial stumbling block. The Fornears are adamant about including the whole family, therefore they named it the Fornear Family Scholarship.”
Past Fornear Family Scholarship recipients have had all or much of their educational expenses defrayed by this award. The final amount of this scholarship is dependant upon SIU-C scholarship program recommendations.
The criteria for the 2009-2010 Fornear Family Scholarship are that the recipient must be a graduate from RLC who maintains a GPA of 3.0 or higher, demonstrate initiative and maintain full-time status. Preference is given to a student who resides in Sesser and enrolls in the SIU-C College of Education (first priority) or College of Medicine, but these are not required for consideration.
The Fornear Family Scholarship recipient will be announced by Oct. 23, 2008, with the award beginning in the fall 2009 semester. The recipient will receive a notification/information letter regarding the award selection results by Oct. 30, 2008. Kern pointed out that the Foundation receives approximately 10 applicants each year and the announcement is made at the RLCF Annual Scholarship Dinner.
Past recipients have displayed a trend of earning their degrees from SIUC and working in the area.
Williams now teaches in Sesser. The 1999 recipient, Nichole Cockrum, is a teacher at Thompsonville Grade School and the 2000 recipient, Lacy Kirk, is a social worker in Carbondale. Jerry Travelstead – Woodlawn Grade School coach, principal and former math teacher – was the 2001 award winner.
There was no recipient in 2002, however 2003 recipients Mandi Page – who is now a radiologic technologist – and Zack Zimbro, a home construction worker with Moore Construction, kept the scholarship caught up.
In 2004, the selection was Shane Garner. He now teaches fifth grade at Sesser and is an assistant coach there. Adam Nagreski (2005) is currently a law student at SIUC and Marsha Lamczyk (2006) is a student in the SIUC College of Education. The 2007 recipient, Travis Zettler of Sesser, is enrolled in the SIUC College of Applied Science where he focuses on information technology.
Last year, the award went to Rachel Matyi of Sesser. Matyi will start this fall in the SIUC College of Education.