Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Awards Scholarships to Nine Outstanding Applicants

The Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Foundation today announced the recipients of nine scholarships. The scholarships are funded by RMFU, FUSA Insurance Agency, and memorials to historic members of Farmers Union. They are given to students with outstanding scholastic achievements and community service, to recognize their gifts and assist them in pursuing their education.

“These recipients are bright young people who are the future leaders of our communities. The RMFU Foundation is proud to present scholarships to nine outstanding young leaders, to help them achieve their career goals,” said RMFU Education Director Jennifer Luitjens Bahr.

Morgan Atchley,  Grand Junction, Colo., FUSA Scholarship ($1000)
Morgan has begun her college career at the University of Colorado/Colorado Springs as a pre-nursing major. She hopes to be accepted into nursing school and eventually become a registered nurse working at a children’s hospital. She is the daughter of David and Deborah Atchley of Grand Junction; her father is a FUSA Insurance agent. She maintained an excellent GPA in the stressful first year of college and she is braced for the challenge of completing a five-year curriculum.

Julia Birgen,  Lafayette, Colo., Charles Petty Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Julia, the daughter of Cindy and Ken Birgen, is fifth-generation Farmers Union; she has attended camp in both South Dakota and Colorado for more than ten years. She is a senior this year at Broomfield High School. She serves in the National Honor Society and manages the girls’ soccer team. She plans to get a secondary teaching certificate in history and then, eventually, a Doctorate in History.

Tiffany Cumming, Julesburg, Colo., James G. Patton Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Tiffany is the daughter of Aaron Cumming and enrolled at Revere High School in Ovid. She is very active in 4-H, both on the council and serving as 4-H representative on the Sedgwick County Fair Board. She plans to study Equine Business Management at Lamar Community College.

Beth Lenz, Holyoke, Colo., Edna Buchanan Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Beth is the daughter of George and Rebecca Lenz of Holyoke and currently enrolled at Wray High School, where she has been active in student council, FFA, National Honor Society while lettering in such sports as track, basketball, and volleyball. Her future plans include studying animal sciences at the University of Wyoming and preparing to own and operate her own ranch. Her teachers describe her as setting high goals for herself and working hard to meet them.

Sara Lockhart, Weldona, Colo., Hazel Hemphill Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Sara is the daughter of Vicki Evans and attends Weldon Valley High School. In 4-H during her freshman year, she won a Grand Reserve Champion for her lamb. She has trained as a dancer and a model. She plans to attend the University of Northern Colorado and major in neonatal nursing. She has maintained honor roll grades while pursuing a busy schedule of school and volunteer activities. The Hazel Hemphill Memorial Scholarship is endowed by Morgan County Farmers Union.

Kyra Ness, Haxtun, Colo., James G. Patton Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Kyra, the daughter of Amanda Ness, has a 3.89 GPA as she nears graduation from Haxtun High School. She is a varsity athlete in volleyball, as well as active in FFA and FBLA. Kyra plans to study nursing at the University of Wyoming. During her junior year at Haxtun, as part of her involvement in Health Occupations Students of America, she shadowed a nurse and felt she had found her calling.

Nathan Searcey,  Casper, Wyo., FUSA Scholarship ($1000)
Nathan is the son of Paul and Nancy Searcey of Casper, Wyoming and a senior at Kelly Walsh High School, where he has exceled in choir and theater. He made Wyoming All-State Choir all four years of high school. He is an officer in the National Honor Society. Nathan will pursue his lifelong interest in music at Anderson University in Indiana. He intends to return to Wyoming to teach choir.

Rebekah Simko, Salida, Colo., Katheryn Pappenheim Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Bekki Simko is the daughter of Barrett and Athena Simko and has lived in Salida for ten years, where she is very active in faith-based community service. She served as president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes her senior year and as president of Art Club, which became National Art Honor Society in 2012. She is also active the National Honor Society. She intends to pursue a degree in Special Education at the University of Northern Colorado. She is looking forward to a career of service and leadership in a rural community, passing along her own successes.

Melanie Sloan,  Denver, Colo., Maurice Parker Memorial Scholarship ($1000)
Melanie Sloan came to Farmers Union through the national College Conference on Cooperatives. She is a Masters Degree candidate in Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Colorado/Denver. She hopes to extend planning theory to rural communities and explore the potential of cooperatives in community development. The Maurice Parker Memorial Scholarship is endowed by Morgan County Farmers Union.