Foundation for Edmonds School District announces merger, grant funds for scholarships

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foundation esd logoThe Foundation for Edmonds School District announced three key pieces of news this week, including:

— Its merger with the Mountlake Terrace Endowment Scholarship Association (MTESA) and the receipt of a $50,000 Nike stock gift. The MTESA scholarship was established in 1982 by Mountlake Terrace High School (MTHS) teachers Judy Roberts, Leo Sherrick and Ed Bush to recognize those students who have represented MTHS in the most positive manner. The majority of MTESA funds have come from generous contributions from MTHS faculty, staff and parents.

Mountlake Terrace High School Alumna, Blair Benshool (Sprunk), class of ‘84, and her husband Eric, donated $50,000 of Nike stock to establish the “Hawks Helping Hawks Scholarship,” in honor of her mothers, Carol and Franque, and to recognize their lifelong generosity towards all walks of life, regardless of gender, sexuality, color and nationality.

— the receipt of $38,700 in grant funding from the Hazel Miller Foundation to support scholarships for graduating Edmonds School District students to pursue post-secondary education.Hazel Miller, a long-time Edmonds resident, was keenly interested in and committed to supporting the education of youth. As a result of her generosity, the foundation will award two $5,000 Hazel and Morris Miller Foundation scholarships to one male and one female graduate in the district. Awards will be based on financial need as well as academic and community service merit. Additionally, the foundation will award eleven $2,000 Hazel Miller Memorial scholarships to one male and one female from the district’s five comprehensive high schools, and one to a graduate from either Edmonds Heights K-12 or E-learning programs.

Included in Hazel Miller Foundation’s gift is $5,000 that will be used for second-year awards. Second-year awards will be made to those students demonstrating greatest financial need, and will be based on satisfactory completion of first-year college academics, maintaining enrollment in either an accredited vocational, two-year or four-year institution, and maintaining a passing grade point average. The awards will be made available to both 2014 and 2015 graduates.

More information and scholarship applications are available on the Foundation for Edmonds School District website.

Foundation Executive Director Deb Anderson notes that the foundation “has been very blessed by the generous gifts of our alumni and community members. Thanks to your generous support, we will increase scholarship awards this year to close to $70,000!” One of those gifts was from Ed Nixon, who decided to set up a scholarship program through the foundation in honor of his late wife Gay Nixon.

Gay Nixon spent nearly 30 years as a math teacher at both Lynnwood and Woodway high schools, and “she brought that love of learning to her students and wanted them to strive for greatness,” her husband said. “As an accomplished musician herself and lover of art history, Gay frequently brought art and music into her classroom to show students that mathematical patterns and concepts were truly everywhere. Her commitment to her students was truly unparalleled. It was her mission.”

“Over this last year, I realized there could be no better way to honor her memory than to set up a scholarship program that will recognize a student who also has that incredible sense of wonder and eagerness to learn more. She would want nothing more than for me to help find the talent and make it grow,” Ed Nixon said.

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