EDUCATION

Deadline for ag scholarships is May 14

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Illinois high school seniors who plan to study agriculture-related majors in college have until May 14 to submit applications for the Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship program, State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias said today.

Giannoulias will award ten $2,000 scholarships to students who plan on attending an Illinois-based college or university in the fall. Applications must be postmarked on or before May 14.

Eligible students must have a minimum 2.75 grade point average during the 2009-10 school year, be accepted at an accredited higher education institution in Illinois by the application deadline, and plan to pursue a career in agriculture or an agriculture-related field.

Students must also submit a completed application, which is available on Treasurer’s website, www.treasurer.il.gov, or call 217-557-6436.

The following information must be included with the application:

• A statement of goals and future plans

• A typed essay (minimum 250 words) identifying the reason(s) you want to pursue a career in agriculture or an agriculture-related field

• An official high school transcript

• Two letters of reference, including one from a non-school source

• A list of extracurricular activities

A scholarship selection committee will select the winners. The Treasurer’s Office will notify the winners by May 28.

To date, the Treasurer’s office has awarded $125,000 in scholarships to rural and urban students seeking degrees in a broad array of agriculture-related  fields, from crop and livestock production to agri-business, engineering,  communications, economics and animal science.

These scholarships are funded through the Bright Start College Savings Program, which is run by the Treasurer’s Office. Bright Start is Illinois’ 529 college savings plan and an easy, tax-free way to invest for college.