Posted by Colin Heggie on Sep 14, 2021
Jim Kanester leads our Scholarship Committee.  He reviewed his most recent report & answered a number of questions.  We provide annual $1,300 scholarships to a Grade 12 graduate from each of our five local high schools; $1,300 to a “trade / technical” grad from one of the schools; $1,000 to an Okanagan College entrant; & five $250 “Special Needs” awards.  Some of the funds are raised each year, historically through 50/50 raffle ticket sales at Vipers hockey games; a slowly growing portion of the funds come from interest on funds invested through the Community Foundation of North Okanagan (CFNO) in our Silver Star Rotary Education Endowment Fund.  This fund now contains nearly $150,000, & typically returns about 3.5 to 4.5% pa on low-risk investments.  Apparently, SSR has been providing scholarships since about 1989.  Records show that since 2009, just over $100,000 has been offered, with about 70% of that actually distributed.  Recipients may claim their funds with proof of registration for any form of higher learning.  Jim explained our selection process favours need, along with academic success.  Often, students from disadvantaged homes benefit from the extra encouragement a scholarship offers, but with the high cost of tuition, books & living expenses, our funds sometimes aren’t enough to persuade a student to carry on with higher learning.  Jim asked each of us to supply him with a letter to a prospective student, outlining something in our experience which might serve to inspire or assist.