Twenty-seven students win Wallin scholarships

Twenty-seven members of the Anoka Hennepin School District’s Class of 2013 have received scholarships from the Wallin Education Partners, something that will help the students afford the rising costs of college.

They were honored at ceremonies held over two nights in May.

The students representing all five of Anoka-Hennepin’s traditional high schools, as well as a handful of other students from neighboring school districts, will each receive $4,000 per year during their four years in college, plus the assistance of Wallin mentors who will help guide them through the ups and downs of college life.

The first ceremony, May 15, honored seniors from Andover and Champlin Park high schools, while the second, May 22, honored Anoka, Blaine and Coon Rapids graduates. Both were hosted at the district’s Educational Service Center in Anoka.

Anoka-Hennepin students have been receiving Wallin scholarships since 2007.

In that time, every one of Anoka-Hennepin’s recipients have graduated from college in four years, according to Gwendolyn Freed, Wallin Education Partners executive director.

“You are about to embark on some of the best years of your life,” Freed said. “College is a time when you will engage with new ideas and questions, you will make new friends, you will see new places. We are so glad to be here with you.”

The program first began in 1992 when Winston and Maxine Wallin started a scholarship program at South High School in Minneapolis for highly capable students from low- and moderate-income families.

Recognizing a broader need, beginning in 2000 the Wallins extended their scholarship program to graduates of all Minneapolis public high schools.

The scholarship program was converted to a private operating foundation and the program continues to grow as additional donor partners join and provide “named” scholarships representing a few of the corporate sponsors of Wallin Education Partners, such as Boston Scientific, Horton Inc. and the Enterprise Education Foundation.

District 11 Superintendent Dennis Carlson said the Wallin Education Partners recognition dinner is one of his favorite nights of the school year. He spoke about how thankful he was to Winston Wallin for beginning the scholarship program and to the donors who have helped it to grow.

“The Wallins have made a life-changing gift to hundreds of students, and now they are making it to you,” Carlson told the students. “They are giving you an opportunity of a lifetime. We are grateful beyond words.”

The 2013 Wallin Educational Partners scholars are: Champlin Park High School, Lane Johnson – North Dakota State University and Logan Oglesby – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Andover High School, Erik Jones – St. Olaf College; Anoka High School, Heather Andryski – University of St. Thomas and Hailee Gifford – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Wallin Scholars

Andover High School; Nick Erickson – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Maria Noel – Gustavus Adolphus College; and Connor Schlotfeldt – North Dakota State University.

Anoka High School: Alysa Cross – St. Mary’s University; and Miller LaMotte – St. Olaf College.

Blaine High School: Lisa Levoir – Macalester College; Andrew Nelson – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Kelli Renner – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Madeline Shogren – University of St. Thomas; and Sanjana Varghese – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Champlin Park High School: Branden Abramson – South Dakota School of Mines and Technology; Adeel Ahmad – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Cody Baird – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Vivian Ma – University of Minnesota, Rochester; Sarah Mrozek – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Mackenzie Rue – undecided; Brady Soderstrom – Bethel University; and Vanessa Tu – St. Cloud State University.

Coon Rapids High School: Brandon Corey – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Ian Marquez – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities; Steven Mueggenberg – College of St. Scholastica; and Anna Truong – University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.