Scholarships, awards and recognitions were presented to students during the 2015 Senior Honors Recognition Ceremony at Burnsville High School (BHS) on May 11.
A new record was set for locally-donated scholarships with civic organizations, businesses and individuals contributing $101,500.
Several scholarships were presented in memory of former teachers, students and community members (Click here to view the award recipient list in its entirety).
For example, the family of Burnsville community leader Ken Slipka presented two scholarships — one to Lauren Johnson and the other to Theodore Ko. Scholarships were also presented in memory of Taylor Ziebol, Mary Lenhardt, Jennifer Sandquist, Lon Hitch, Renae Gustafson and Robert Naffziger.
Scholarships of $1,000 each went to 14 Burnsville High School seniors and one senior at Burnsville Alternative High School — the most ever presented from funds raised by the annual Class Acts teacher variety show. Over the past 27 years, Class Acts has raised nearly $300,000 for scholarships to graduating seniors.
A unique scholarship was presented by US Federal Credit Union which challenged students to save money for a particular length of time. Two students, Sydney Botz and Marissa Harrison, met the requirements and received matching $1,000 scholarships.
Two alumni, Scott Kadrlik and Todd Olson, presented scholarships from the Hanson Foundation, established to honor retired teacher and coach Dick Hanson. Recipients were Claire Boatman, Carley Commings, Michelle Diaz, Elliott Hopen, Madeline Phillips and Michelle Stage.
“We are very fortunate to have a community that places a high value on education and gives generously in so many ways from the early childhood to senior years,” said Principal Dave Helke. “This giving includes approximately $100,000 in community scholarships that will be presented this evening. For this we are very grateful and appreciative to be part of a community so supportive of education.”
“All of the seniors here this evening have made their learning and academic success a priority,” said Helke. “The recognitions this evening are well deserved by all these students and are proof to us all that setting goals and challenging ourselves to do our personal best leads us down the path of success. This evening is all about the commitment they have made and the dedication they have shown to their education.”
Each academic department at the high school presented an outstanding senior award. Seniors also received specific awards for their achievements in academics, athletics and the arts.
“We at Burnsville High School are very proud of the accomplishments of our students,” said Ashley Welke, the school counselor who coordinated the event. "These students certainly made the most of their high school years and now head off to college with a successful track record of achievements."