Perspectives

Making the Grade: MSF Awards Academic Scholarships

Montana’s aging workforce faces a wave of retirements, especially in the construction and trades industries. In addition, this field has a higher percentage of workplace injuries than average. To improve the safety record, and encourage the next generation to enter these fields, MSF recently awarded $4,000 scholarships to 15 college students majoring in the occupational health and safety or construction trades professions.

These scholarships are part of MSF’s Growing a Safer Montana (GSM) initiative. The program aims to educate young workers about the importance of workplace safety before they enter the workforce.

MSF President Laurence Hubbard (center) with scholarship recipients

MSF began offering these competitive academic scholarships in 2018. In that time the number of scholarships and the amounts has risen. This year $4,000 scholarships were awarded to 15 students. Last year 11 students received $3,000 scholarships. And in the first year, 10 students were awarded $1,500 each.  In all, MSF has awarded 36 students a total of $108,000 in scholarship monies.

The application process includes taking an educational quiz, writing an essay on the importance of safety specific to the applicants desired industry and how they plan to champion safety in the future. The application also requires two letters of recommendation. Finally, the student must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

The 2020 recipients include:

Flathead Valley Community College
Jon Carlson – Electrical Technology
Gregory McCleerey – Welding Technology
Brian Hollingsworth – Industrial Machine Technology
Vanessa Janckila- Welding Technology
Hayden Wood – Welding Technology

Missoula College
David Anderson –  Carpentry

University of MT (Bitterroot)
Annika Gordon – – Sustainable Construction Technology

University of Montana
Troy Bawden – Construction Technology
Casey Paulson – Sustainable Construction Technology

Highlands College
David Ingalls – -Construction Technology/Carpentry

Montana Tech
Cara O’Donnell – BS) Occupational Safety and Health
Kelsey Schmidt – MS) Industrial Hygiene
Abigail Passage – (BS) Occupational Safety and Health
Blake Nichols – (BS) Occupational Safety and Health
Jacques Boulet – (BS) Occupational Safety and Health

To find out more about Growing a Safer Montana, visit our website

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Important MSF Contact Information

Customer Service
800-332-6102
406-495-5001 (Direct Line to Select Service)
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Main Website Address
montanastatefund.com

Safety Website Address
safemt.com 

Return to Work Resources/Young Worker Safety
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800-332-6102 Extension 5361 (Kirk Smith)

ACE Program 800-332-6102 Extension 5292 (Rita Naylor)

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