TELLURIDE, Colo. – (June 6, 2016) The end of the school year marks an exciting time for high school seniors, and many high-achieving students at Telluride, Norwood, and Nucla high schools were awarded a generous amount of scholarships from the Telluride Foundation. Scholarships this year included a $20,000 Neil Armstrong Scholarship, six Strokes of Genius Scholarships for $5,000 or $2,500 each, and five Telluride Foundation Scholarships for $1,000 each, for a total of $50,000.
At the May 22nd Norwood High School graduation, graduating senior Brayden Barkemeyer received the fourth annual $20,000 Neil Armstrong Scholarship. Braden will be attending University of Colorado to study aerospace engineering. Braden was selected from a very competitive pool of applicants from the Telluride, Ouray, Norwood and West End school districts; the scholarship committee based their decision on his outstanding academics, strong interest in science, dedication, perseverance, and financial need. In a video presentation during the graduation ceremony by Carol Armstrong, the wife of the late Neil Armstrong, Carol stated that “Braden exhibited many of the qualities of my husband Neil, including his interest in aerospace at such a young age and devouring every course possible in math and science.”
The Neil Armstrong scholarship fund was created by friends and family of Neil Armstrong to honor the achievements and character of the late American hero and astronaut who died in 2012. The Neil Armstrong Scholarship is awarded each year to a regional high school student pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM).
Now in its 23rd year, the Strokes of Genius Scholarship has become a proud Telluride tradition, and this year, six scholarships were awarded at the Telluride awards ceremony for graduating seniors. It is the largest and longest running local scholarship available for Telluride’s graduating seniors, awarded to students who demonstrate financial need, academic excellence, exceptional character, community involvement, and leadership potential.
The Strokes of Genius Fund was established originally as the Benchmark Fund by the Benchmark Partners, a generous group of individuals (Ron & Joyce Allred, Forrest & Maria Faulconer, Nancy and Tom McNamara, Ock & Joanie Peterson and Jim & Sheila Wells) who identified the need for a college scholarship fund for THS students. The proceeds from the Strokes of Genius Golf Tournament, held each July, fuel the scholarship fund, which is now managed by the Telluride Foundation.
Since its inception, Strokes of Genius has distributed over $350,000 in college scholarships to 89 Telluride graduates. The 2016 recipients include: Ebba Green ($5,000), attending Colorado College; Sarah Newell ($5,000), attending Southern Methodist University; Mackenzie Turrin ($5,000), attending Colorado School of Mines; Anna Fake ($2,500), attending Montana State University; Jack Plantz ($2,500) attending University of Colorado Boulder: and Telluride Mountain School’s Makenna Craige ($5,000), attending University of Puget Sound.
Attention golfers: Now is your chance to take a swing for a great cause, providing college scholarships for Telluride graduates. This year’s Strokes of Genius Tournament, held July 22-23 at the Telluride Golf Club, will celebrate 23 years of supporting higher education. The tournament includes dinner in a private home, golf, and events, such as a Calcutta and an awards luncheon. There are a few spots left, so come out and play for the kids! Call Katie at (970) 728-8717 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more or register.
Recipients of the Telluride Foundation Scholarships included Mayra Castillo Ortega ($1,000) attending Delta Montrose Technical College; and Vivian Storm ($1,000) attending Naropa University from Telluride High School, Haley Franklin ($1,000) attending Colorado Mesa University and Makayla Sutherland ($1,000) attending Colorado Mesa University from Norwood High School, as well as Roxanne Ervin ($1,000) attending Westminster College from Nucla High School
“The Foundation Board and its donors believe that one of the best investments we can make is in our local youth,” said Paul Major, President & CEO of the Telluride Foundation. “We are thankful to our generous donors who believe in the importance of post-secondary education and in recognizing these kids who are such a great reflection of our community and the future of our country” For more information on the Neil Armstrong Scholarship Fund and the Telluride Foundation, please go to www.telluridefoundation.org and click on “Our Work” and then “Donor Stewardship.” For information about the Strokes of Genius Scholarship or to play in the tournament call Katie at 970-728-8717 or email email@example.com.
The Telluride Foundation exists to create a stronger Telluride community through the promotion and support of philanthropy. It is a nonprofit, apolitical community foundation that provides year-round support for local organizations involved in arts, education, athletics, charitable causes, land conservation and other community-based efforts through technical assistance, education and grant making. As a grant maker, The Foundation awards grants to qualified applicants who serve the people living and working in the Telluride area for the purpose of enhancing the quality of life within the region. For more information on the Telluride Foundation, visit www.telluridefoundation.org.