Mville Rotary taking apps for $60,000 in scholarship money

MARYSVILLE The Marysville Rotary Club Education Foundation will be handing out as much as $60,000 to local high school students this spring.
Applications are being accepted from high school seniors who attend or live in the Marysville and Lakewood school district boundaries and are available at school counseling offices or from the Rotary website,
The foundation has been giving the scholarships for more than a dozen years but a bequest of $475,000 from local philanthropist Mildred Austin has allowed the foundation to extend its reach. Last year one $4,000 scholarship was granted in addition to a couple for $2,000, among other awards. There should be more available this year.
In general the grants are awarded to students planning to attend the University of Washington or Washington State University, or for those starting at Everett Community College and working their way up to a four-year college. A variety of factors are used to determine the winners, including grade point averages and community service, but financial need probably has the most impact, according to foundation president Chris Nation. Its gotten easier since the Austin bequest in September 2005, he said.
Weve been able to increase the amount were giving out this year by about six or seven thousand dollars, so well be able to impact several more students, Nation said.
Austin was a local bookkeeper who passed away May 4, 2005. A fun but frugal bookkeeper, she left the bulk of her fortune to the Rotary Education Foundation in part because she remembered how her parents scraped and scrimped to put her through the University of Washington during the Great Depression.
The Rotary also raises funds through an annual charity auction that nets about $20,000 and the Pumpkins for Literacy project that has earned about $100,000 over the last seven years. Most of those funds go to elementary school literacy projects, including the 1,400 dictionaries given to Lakewood and Marysville third-graders.
For more information, see the Web site or write Maggie Buckholz at the Marysville Rotary Club, P.O. Box 1875, Marysville WA 98270

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