In 2007, Kali and Dan Rourke founded the Seedling College Scholarships to send a strong and clear message to 8th graders in the Seedling Mentor Program: We believe in you!
Since then, this wonderful gift to promote higher learning keeps growing and others have been moved over the years to contribute funding. This year, in addition to the Rourkes, we are grateful for contributions from Deb Treece and Leslie Callahan in the form of the Treece-Callahan Family Scholarship, Mike & Sally Metschan, Valerie and Eric Francois for the McKail Smith Book Scholarship, and Rosalie and Joe Oliveri who have continued a tradition of adding supplemental funds for our scholarship winners when the students reach their senior year. To date, Seedling has awarded over $310,000.00 in scholarships to outstanding mentored students.
It was a pleasure to acknowledge once more, the 2019 scholarship recipients as these five scholars are now graduating and have plans that include attending the University of Texas, University of North Texas, Cosmetology school and serving in the military. They will certainly be putting their awards to good use!
This year’s 8th grade scholarship recipients come from Lamar MS, Kealing MS, Bedichek MS, Austin Achieve, and Gus Garcia Young Men’s Academy. Following is what they had to say about having a Seedling Mentor:
- “My mentor has given me the opportunity to open up and socialize more and learn how to communicate better.”
- “My mentor has always encouraged me, and has created a safe and comfortable environment.”
- “My mentor has influenced me to become more social, and to use my abilities to reach towards and achieve my goals while overcoming difficult times.”
- “I have loved every second of the time I have had with my mentor. Through the good and the bad we have laughed and cried together.” “My mentor is that unexpected person you just need in your life.”
- “My mentor is my number one supporter and helps me to choose classes and after school activities that will aid in pursuit of my dreams.”
For the second year in a row, through the kind generosity of the Treece-Callahan family, Seedling was able to offer senior mentees the opportunity to apply for the incredible $10,000 Treece-Callahan Family Scholarship in a similar competitive process.
The Treece-Callahan family created this scholarship opportunity recognizing that the financial worries associated with attending college can be an impediment to seeking and succeeding in post-secondary education. Their intent was to provide a scholarship that would substantially alleviate the financial challenges faced by a new college student, allowing the student to focus on their studies, thrive in the academic setting, and obtain their degree. This year’s Treece-Callahan Family Scholarship is being awarded to a Seedling Mentee who is the first in her family to attend college. She plans to attend the University of North Texas in the fall and aspires to a career as an optometrist.