Michigan youth livestock scholarship deadline

April 7, 2014

Lansing — Since 2000, the Michigan Youth Livestock Scholarship Fund (MYLSF) has awarded more than $350,000 in scholarships and educational awards to outstanding youth who have exhibited at the premier livestock events in the state of Michigan.

To be eligible for either the MYLSF general scholarship or the statewide scholarship, the applicant must be a resident of Michigan and a graduating high school senior or a high school graduate continuing their education at an accredited institution in the year in which they are applying.

For the general MYLSF scholarship, the applicant must be a youth exhibitor at the Michigan State Fair, Michigan Livestock Expo or the Michigan Dairy Expo for a minimum of three calendar years prior to the year of application.  For the statewide scholarship, an applicant must be a youth exhibitor at a local, county, or statewide exhibition for a minimum of three years prior to the year of application.

Specific proceeds from the Michigan State Fair Youth Livestock Auction and the Michigan Livestock Expo as well as charitable donations help fund the scholarships.  The fund is governed by a 10-member board comprised of volunteers from Michigan’s agricultural community, with the corpus of the fund held at the Battle Creek Community Foundation. In 2013, approximately $17,000 was deposited in the Michigan Education Saving Plans for youth exhibitors that compete in judging and showmanship events at the Michigan Livestock Expo on the Michigan State University campus.

The 2013 MYLSF $1,500 general scholarship winners were: Kelly Raterink of Zeeland; Bryant Chapman of South Rockwood; Jake Sloan of Quincy; Kayla Mitchell of Burr Oak and Joshua Kelpinski of Owosso.  The MYLSF $1,000 scholarships were awarded to Justin Ruggles of Kingston and Seth Gibson of Union City. The statewide $1,000 scholarship was awarded to Bethany Myers of Montgomery; and the $500 statewide scholarship was awarded to Michaela Marks of Stephenson.

The 2013 Quality of Life, comprised of the Michigan departments of Agriculture and Rural Development, Environmental Quality, and Natural Resources, the $500 Gene Thompson Scholarship winners were: Trevor Adams of Gaylord; Gregg Davis of Leslie; Kyle Helwig of Lake Leelanau; Joshua Kelpinski of Owosso; Ryan Knox of Sand Creek; Russell Lipe of Bath; Duane London of Bay City; Abby Maynard of Holt, and Erin Wenk of Williamston.

Applications and qualification requirements for the MYLSF and the statewide scholarship can be obtained at www.michigan.gov/mda-mylsf.  Applications must be postmarked no later than May 31, 2014.  If you have any questions, please contact Jeff Haarer, Michigan Department of Agriculture’s Producer Security Section Manager, at 517-284-5642 or Ernie Birchmeier, Michigan Farm Bureau’s Livestock & Dairy Specialist, at 517-323-7000.

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