Fall Oregon News: Celebrating Scholarships

We’re bursting with pride at the scholarships awarded over the last year by branches from all corners of the State of Oregon.

South District

Ashland Branch

Co-Presidents Regina Ayers and Catherine Lutes

For the 2022-23 academic year, the Ashland Branch awarded nearly $33,000 in scholarships to five students at Southern Oregon University (SOU) and four students at Rogue Community College (RCC). The nine scholars will be featured at the annual Celebration of Scholars, hosted by the Branch, on September 28, at SOU.

The nine students represent a broad range of subject areas. In the SOU graduate division, one scholar is attaining her Master’s in education while two others are doing their graduate work in clinical health counseling. There are two senior SOU scholars: one majoring in chemistry and the other in biology. The four scholars attending RCC work in anthropology, allied health, general studies and human services.

The Ashland Branch raises money for the SOU and RCC scholarships through annual appeals and fundraisers. Each school’s funds are managed by its respective foundation, SOU Foundation or RCC Foundation. The Branch has supported and awarded scholarships since 1996.

Our Named Scholarship Program honors a contribution or bequest of $50,000 or more.  The three SOU Scholarships are named in perpetuity for the Katherine and Ron Lang Family, Judy Yin Shih, and the Kate and Jim Wolf-Pizor Family.

Grants Pass Branch

Co-Presidents Kay Hawkins and Nancy Lester

For the 2022-2023 academic year, the Grants Pass Branch was proud to award a total of $14,000 in scholarship money. All scholarships were for Rogue Community College students.

$2500 was awarded to the recipient of the Frog O’Faire Scholarship. AAUW Grants Pass Scholarships were awarded to five worthy recipients, each receiving $2000. Also awarded to an outstanding student was the Katherine Francis Bilas Memorial Endowed Scholarship of $1500.

Medford Branch

Co-Presidents Lisa Hughes and Carol Koszyk

For the school year 2022-2023, the Medford Branch awarded a total of $16,200 in scholarships. They gave $13,500 toward the education of women attending either Rogue Community College (RCC) or Southern Oregon University (SOU). Three $2,700 scholarships were awarded to women attending RCC; including one Technical Scholarship and two $2,700 were awarded to SOU students.

The Branch also awarded $2,700 in scholarship money to support young women so they can attend educational events that will help cultivate and challenge their curiosity like ACADEMY: a week-long camp on the SOU Campus for academically talented students completing grades five through eight and AWSEM (Advocates for Women in Science): a one-day gathering for students in grades six through eight who are interested in learning more about STEM careers. For ACADEMY, the Branch awarded three scholarships of $750 each; for AWSEM, the Branch awarded ten scholarships of $45 each.

Roseburg Branch

Co-Presidents Marisa Fink and Betty Mack

The Roseburg Branch awarded three scholarships this year to Umpqua Community College students. One of the recipients is majoring in psychology and plans to attend the University of Oregon upon completion of her Associate’s degree. Another recipient is a Certified Nursing Assistant majoring in nursing. The third recipient works full time while also completing her nursing degree.

North Central District

Gresham Area

One $3,000 scholarship to a second-year student at Mt. Hood Community College.

Hillsboro/Forest Grove

AAUW HBFG normally gives two student awards. One award is to a student that had to interrupt her higher education and has now returned to complete her degree. We also provided a scholarship to NCCWSL. Unfortunately, we did not provide funding for NCCWSL in 2022. Instead, our branch elected to provide two students awards, each $2500. The students are attending Pacific University.  In 2023, we will probably resume the student and NCCWSL funding.

Lake Oswego

Lake Oswego AAUW provided scholarship funds to Oregon Tradeswomen to provide tuition for women for an apprenticeship program in the building trades. We are pleased that this program and their director, Lisa Palermo, have received local and national attention for their program. Lisa was awarded the AAUW “Breaking Barrier’s” award and Oregon Tradeswomen were featured on the front page of the Oregonian with President Biden.


Over the last several years the Portland Branch has raised sufficient funds to provide three $1,500 scholarships each year for Portland Community College students who were following a STEM curriculum with concrete plans to achieve a four-year degree. These scholarships at PCC have been in effect for decades.

At its June 1, 2022, meeting the Portland Branch board voted to establish an AAUW Portland branch through the PCC Foundation, and transferred $10,000 from the branch account to start the endowment. The fund needs to grow to $25,000 within the next 5 years before its proceeds can award scholarships. Tax benefits for retirees, the lower maintenance cost associated with an endowment versus an annual scholarship, and the legacy aspects were all reasons to move to an endowment.

Online Branch

The Online Branch does not award scholarships to institutions of higher learning. However, we do award one scholarship to the NCCWSL Conference (National Conference for College Women Student Leaders) to a college woman leader chosen from a pool of applicants, as funds permit. The scholarship amount is for $1200 to attend the conference in person in Maryland in May. Since the conference was virtual in 2022, we did not have any applications this past year.

Tigard Area

The Tigard Area Branch is proud to be able to sponsor a student at Portland Community College. Applicants write an essay that is read by a panel of members who work together with Portland Community College to select a candidate. In the past, we have been able to support many wonderful applicants.

Seaside Branch

First Generation ( June Stromberg Scholarship)

Seaside High School recipients:

  • Two received $1500
  • One received $2000

Warrenton High School Recipients:

  • Two received $1000

Cheri Folk Leadership Award

  • One Clatsop Community Grad now attending OSU received $1000

Returning Student after Absence

  • One woman received $2000

Helen Gronquist 2nd Year returning First Generation

  • One woman received $1500

Central District

  • Albany Branch – 4 ($350 ea.) scholarships awarded to Linn Benton Community College women studying in the fields of STEM
  • Salem Branch – 1 $1000) scholarship awarded to Chemeketa Community College student studying in a field underrepresented by women (STEM)


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