Gesa Credit Union, a community-chartered credit union, today announced the recipients of $100,000 in scholarship funds granted for the 2021-2022 academic year. Since 1987, Gesa has awarded more than $530,000 in scholarships to students who have participated in Gesa’s High School Credit Union program. The program helps students who have active student loans, are entering college for the first time, or are pursuing higher education.
In the past, Gesa has given $45,000 annually to graduating high school students, entering freshmen, and college students who are continuing their education. This year, Gesa more than doubled its commitment. Additionally, this year, Gesa will begin offering help to credit union members with active student loans through the introduction of the new Student Loan Repayment Scholarship.
“To us, there is no better way to give back to the community than to invest in future leaders continuing their education,” said Don Miller, President and CEO of Gesa Credit Union. “We have 12 High School Gesa branch partners throughout the state and are so encouraged by the work of students who have been involved in our program. It is our honor to recognize their extraordinary contributions in this way.”
Among the many outstanding individuals who are part of this cohort are two Pasco, WA, members: Tewachech (Te) Feser of Delta High School and Chanda Baie of Chiawana High School. Feser won a total of $11,000 in scholarships from the President’s Choice Entering Freshmen, and Student Intern High School Credit Union awards. After being diagnosed with polio at age 2, Feser entered the foster system at age 8 and went on to excel as a Gesa Student Teller and Intern in high school, all while maintaining a 3.9 GPA.
“In the fall I will be attending Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona and this scholarship will cover most of my first-year tuition,” said Feser. “This scholarship will be helping me tremendously and now that I don’t have to worry about money for the first year, I can put all my efforts into school and work to save money for the next year. I am extremely thankful for this scholarship.”
Baie is a teacher and advisor for Gesa’s High School Credit Union Campus Branch at Chiawana High School and has led their program to consistently be a top performing Campus Branch year after year. Baie was awarded $1,000 in the Student Loan Repayment category.
“Obtaining my degree at an older age I was unable to qualify for a normal scholarship that average high schoolers apply for,” said Baie. “Graduating with a large amount of debt has added strain to my family's financial situation. This scholarship will help ease that financial burden.”
Madison Krogh, a Gesa member from Moses Lake, WA, and the President’s Choice $5,000 Winner for the Continued Education Category this year, is entering her student teacher year in 2021 and is focused on becoming a teacher in a small town where she can make a significant impact on education in the community.
“I am so honored to be selected for The Gesa Credit Union Educational Scholarship,” said Krogh. “I have always worked my way through school and this next year would have be a challenge since I will be adding student teaching to my plate. This scholarship will allow me to dedicate more time to my students that I am working with in the elementary classroom. I am very grateful to Gesa Credit Union for investing in my future. It means the world to me.”
A complete list of award categories and scholarship winners can be found at https://www.gesa.com/community/scholarships. Applications for the 2022-2023 scholarships will open in October 2021. To learn more about Gesa Credit Union and its scholarship program, visit www.gesa.com.
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