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Local students awarded ag scholarships

Published: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

Kailyn Buchholz of Waterman and Erik Gommel of Malta are recipients of the 2014 First Choice Agriculture Scholarship from 1st Farm Credit Services. 

Buchholz, a senior at Indian Creek High School, is the daughter of Robert and Bonnie Buchholz and Julie Wilson. She has been active in 4-H, FFA and her church youth group. 

Gommel, a senior at DeKalb High School, is the son of Mark and Laurie Gommel. He has been active in 4-H, FFA and marching band.

1st Farm Credit Services recently announced the 24 recipients of the $1,500 scholarship, which supports students who are pursuing a higher education in an agriculture field or a degree that will contribute to the quality of rural life.

More than 500 students have received scholarships from 1st Farm Credit Services, which has been awarding high school scholarships for more than 21 years.

“Our commitment to building a prosperous future for agriculture starts with the investments we have made with our scholarship recipients,” 1st Farm Credit Services President/CEO Gary J. Ash said in a news release. “These students – and those that came before them – cultivate a passion for agriculture and will become the future leaders needed in Illinois agriculture and rural communities.”

Recipients were selected from a pool of 145 applicants based on their future commitment to rural America, academic achievement, community activities and agriculture involvement. An independent panel of leaders in farming, agribusiness, youth and education selected the scholarship recipients.

In the fall, Buchholz plans to attend the University of Wisconsin-Platteville to pursue a degree in agribusiness. She hopes to work in her local community selling agricultural seed, fertilizer or chemicals and work on the family farm.

Gommel plans to attend Iowa State University to pursue a degree in agriculture systems technology. He hopes to work on farm equipment from a major corporation and return to work on the family farm.

A banquet and formal presentation of the scholarships will be hosted by 1st Farm Credit Services for the students and their parents in June.

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