Sealaska will award $468,000 in scholarships for the 2014 – 2015 academic year. Since inception, Sealaska has directed more than $12 million towards scholarships.
“Sealaska’s commitment to education is a source of pride and makes a positive impact on people,” said Sealaska President and CEO Chris E. McNeil, Jr. “Our pledge to support shareholder education is an investment in our future and to building leaders.”
The scholarship program is supporting 367 college students this year. 2014 scholarship funds were derived from a $293,000 contribution from Sealaska Timber Corporation, a benefit of the timber harvest program. The remaining $175,000 comes from the education endowment for a total of $468,000. Sealaska Heritage Institute was established to support and administer cultural and educational programs, including Sealaska scholarships.
“We have seen thousands of students graduate from college and achieve higher degrees as well, since the inception of the scholarship program,” said SHI President Rosita Worl. “We are growing a workforce with specialized knowledge to help grow Sealaska in the future.”
Also awarded was a Judson L. Brown Leadership Award, a scholarship created by an endowment established by Chris and Mary McNeil.
“Mary and I created the Judson Brown Scholarship to recognize my uncle’s leadership and passion for education,” said McNeil. “Judson inspired both Mary and me in obtaining higher education and furthering our careers. We are pleased to announce that Tasha Hotch has been selected for the $5,000 award.”
Tasha is working towards a master’s degree in project management at Wayland Baptist University. Tasha is Raven/Gaanaxteidí (frog) and from Klukwan, AK. Nearly $100,000 of the total scholarship awards will directly benefit Alaska Institutions.