Scholarship size not important


Shocked and appalled by the stunning display of greed and ingratitude in last week’s letter regarding “smaller” scholarships. Please understand: no one OWES you or your child a scholarship. It is a gift, freely given. A gift horse, if you will. How unseemly to look at it with an attitude of entitlement. Some families take money directly from their own pockets to fund an annual gift. Things happen in those families, too. Deaths, illness, unemployment or other misfortunes. We will never know what sacrifice and soul-searching was involved with each gift.

Others endow a fund to be managed by financial advisers, each year giving only the fund’s earnings so as to ensure that the scholarships continue into perpetuity. The market goes up, the market goes down, and some years the fund might barely earn $250. In a good year, the question then arises: Is it better to give $500 to each of four students or to give $2,000 to one?

True, costs have risen, but so has the number of scholarships. When I was in high school, there was only one major scholarship, and only for a boy. (Of course, back then, no one thought a girl could be an engineer.) Today, IMHS graduates annually receive several millions in scholarships.

One more thing: the presentation pictures in the newspaper are not there to brag but to acknowledge the achievers, to honor the memory of loved ones, and perhaps to inspire and encourage others to make a similar gift.

Lola Johnson