Scholarships

FEDERATED CHALLENGE SCHOLARSHIP

Thanks to the generosity of the Federated Challenge we are offering a scholarship for up to $5,000 for students to attend a non-four year education that focuses on obtaining an apprenticeship, certificate or associate’s degree.  This scholarship for up to $5,000 per year is for students to attend a non-four year education or training program at an accredited Minnesota post-secondary school that focuses on obtaining an apprenticeship, certificate or associate’s degree.  Funds may be used for tuition, fees, books, and other necessary expenses related to the particular program or training (e.g. tools, materials, cookware, etc.) Awards will range from $1,000-$5,000, and will be evenly distributed between the 2 semesters immediately following the application deadline. For example if a student applies by May 1st and they receive $1,000, they will get $500 of their scholarship the following Fall semester and the remaining $500 for the next Spring semester.

The application for scholarships for Fall 2022 semester is now open. The deadline to apply is Friday, April 15th at 11:59pm.  Please click here for the link.

Eligibility:

Applicants to the Federated Challenge Scholarship must:

  • Be a current or past Little Brother or Little Sister or High School Big Brother or Big Sister for a minimum period of 18 months prior to the application deadline date.
  • Have been matched through one of the Minnesota Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies: BBBS of the Greater Twin Cities, BBBS of Central MN or BBBS of Southern MN.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or have permanent resident status.
  • Have attained a high school diploma or GED (or will have graduated prior to the term for which the scholarship application is being submitted).
  • Be enrolled or plan to enroll part-time or full-time in a non-four year program at a trade, technical or community college or another accredited Minnesota postsecondary school to obtain an apprenticeship, certificate, or associate’s degree.
  • Have a minimum grade point average of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale (or its equivalent).
  • Have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Please note this scholarship is not based on financial need, so if you do not qualify for free or reduced lunch, you are still eligible to apply for this scholarship if you meet all other criteria.

Award recipients will be required to:

  • Turn in all paperwork when Big Brothers Big Sisters requests it.
  • Connect with the College Access representative (Ann Matvick) at your BBBS agency at least once per semester

Application materials required:

  • Submit this online application by Sunday, April 15th at 11:59pm. Make sure you have everything you need to submit your application. It will need to be done all at once.
  • Unofficial High School or College Transcript
  • At least one Letter of Recommendation (this can be from a teacher or counselor, your Big, an employer or a community member such as a coach, mentor, faith leader, etc.). Your are welcome to submit more than one as well.
  • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) confirmation email: Please connect with Ann Matvick directly if you are unsure of how to obtain this document.

Interested students may fill out the online application individually, but are encouraged to contact Ann Matvick, Program Director, at Ann@BigDefenders.org or 320-258-4517 for assistance with filling out the application and with any questions.

BriAnna Kruzel Memorial Scholarship

BriAnna Kruzel is a former Little Sister and High School Big Sister, who passed away suddenly and unexpectedly in September 2013. BriAnna's family would like to carry forward BriAnna's legacy.

BriAnna’s experience with the Big Brothers Big Sisters program was quite unique. When her father was deployed in Iraq, BriAnna began as a Little Sister in the program. Years later, BriAnna decided to become a High School Big Sister as a way to provide the same experience to another child. BriAnna was matched with a Little Sister whose father was deployed overseas. BriAnna and her Little Sister were able to form an instant bond and BriAnna was able to provide advice and support. BriAnna was a dedicated friend and mentor for over two years. She was selected as the 2013 High School Big Sister of the Year for her outstanding commitment to the program and her Little Sister. She was also honored by the St. Cloud Optimist Club with the “Youth Appreciation Award” for her work with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

BriAnna's family would like to honor her memory by awarding a scholarship to a High School Senior who is a current/past Little Brother/Sister or High School Big Brother/Sister who has some of the same characteristics that BriAnna had. BriAnna was a very hardworking, dedicated student who worked diligently at achieving the best grades that she could. BriAnna may not have received the “A” that she was striving for but would never give up on her overall grade.

BriAnna believed strongly in giving and volunteering. She was an active member of Big Brothers Big Sisters, volunteered with Sartell Community Education, her church, and would help anyone that needed assistance. She was also a person who believed in loving each and every person that she came in touch with. She was strong in her faith; she didn’t judge anyone and was compassionate towards everyone. BriAnna had a contagious smile that would light up a room. After BriAnna passed away, her family would evaluate their lives by asking themselves, “What Would Bri Do?” Please check out http://wwbdinc.org to learn more about BriAnna and What Would Bri Do.

BriAnna's family would like to honor her memory by awarding a current/past Little Brother/Sister or High School Big Brother/Sister with a $500 scholarship to a college of their choice. Payment of scholarship will be awarded after submitting proof of completion of first semester of college to What Would Bri Do, 334 Pine Rd, Sartell, MN 56377.

Eligibility Requirements:
1. The applicant must be a current/past Little Brother/Sister or High School Big Brother/Big Sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central MN program.
2. The applicant must be a senior in high school.
3. The applicant must have been matched through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central MN for at least 18 months.

Application Requirements:
1. Submit this application form by April 1st, 2022.  Here is the link - https://bbbs.tfaforms.net/4843657.
2. Submit a senior photo with your application.
3. The winner will be notified by April 29th, 2022.
4. By submitting your application you are giving WWBD Inc. and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central MN permission to share your photo and story.

If you have any questions please contact Ann Matvick @ 320.258.4517 or ann@BigDefenders.org