Michigan’s ChoiceOne Bank recently awarded 13 scholarships for the annual ChoiceOne Scholarship Essay Contest.
The awards, announced Tuesday, include the need-based scholarships for graduating seniors in the communities the bank serves. Sparta-based ChoiceOne encourages and rewards graduating seniors who obtain a degree with a one-time $1,000 scholarship to each recipient for their first year of college.
The scholarship winners were selected from 11 community high schools. The contest began in January and ended in March. Students were tasked with submitting an application which included an essay about one of their community-service experiences, describing why they got involved, who benefited and in what ways. Eligible candidates included high school seniors, GED recipients in the current calendar year who had not begun college classes and homeschooled students with documentation of high school equivalency and college eligibility. Students had to be graduating seniors who planned to attend an accredited two- or four-year college in Michigan this fall.
“Families are the heart of our communities, and we are committed to their well-being,” said ChoiceOne Bank President Michael J. Burke Jr. “Our seniors are the next generation of leaders, so it’s important for them to realize the benefits of being raised and educated in a caring and supportive community. We have been offering this contest for many years now, and it’s always an enlightening experience for all of us.”
The following students were selected out of more than 180 submissions:
- Michelle Kober – Sparta High School
- Bridget Hosmer – Sparta High School
- Logan Petty – Cedar Springs High School
- Morgan Wawee – Coopersville High School
- Duc Ngan Chau – Wyoming High School
- Ashlyn Henderson – Montague High School
- Kyle Nelson – North Branch High School
- Kaleb June – North Branch High School
- Amelia Chavez – Lapeer High School
- Ayden Kipper – Capac High School
- Praewa Montross – Saint Clair High School
- Brooke McIntyre – Yale High School
- Natalie Nowak – Imlay City High School
“It was this kindness that showed me the importance of giving to others, because it allowed me to see how that help could do so much for a family in need,” Petty said of receiving the scholarship.
“Throughout this journey, I was embraced and welcomed within a group of people I could relate with which helped me to find my identity,” Montross added. “Most importantly, I was able to help those that were in a similar situation, find a sense of belonging by openly inviting them into our diversely growing community.”
The $2.1 billion ChoiceOne Bank has 34 locations serving west and southeastern Michigan.