Sierra Club offers scholarships |

Sierra Club offers scholarships

Susan Wood

Kids – the Sierra Club wants you for a war against poverty in your small town.

The national environmental group is offering scholarships of $2,000 a year to graduates of the class of 2001 who plan to enter a four-year program and live in rural areas.

The four-year scholarships are available to any student who resides in a rural area of the Sierra Nevada with a population of 10,000 or less.

Students who live in the Sierra Nevada and commute to high schools in larger communities or in the Central Valley are also eligible.

According to Sierra Club spokeswoman Barbara Boyle, the primary goal of this latest offering revolves around the environmental group’s wanting “to stimulate the thinking of young people who will carry the responsibility for the future of their communities.”

Boyle said she recognizes that many rural communities face economic difficulties. Often, these hard times come about from the heavy reliance on the resource extraction industries. These include logging, farming and mining.

“It is hoped (but not required) that, upon graduation from college, scholarship recipients will return (to their homelands) and use their talents for the improvement of their communities,” she stated.

Students who are interested in applying are required to submit an application and write an essay that is no longer than 1,000 words and talks about how the student sees the future of the community. It’s encouraged that students identify problems and suggest solutions to those quandaries.

Here’s a hint to improve chances for selection: The Sierra Club is particularly interested in environmental-related dilemmas communities experience and the student’s record of service in the town.

A panel of educators, business leaders and Sierra Club members who live in or have close ties to the Sierra Nevada region will select the 10 candidates. The club has awarded 34 scholarships.

As part of the criteria, students who plan to transfer from a community college to a four-year program are also eligible.

A copy of a student’s high school transcripts should also be included in the application package to be sent to: Sierra Club, CA/NV/HI field office; Attention Sierra Nevada Scholarships; 1414 K St., No. 300; Sacramento, CA 95814. The entries must be postmarked by Feb. 25.

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