Mary Johnston scholarship continues to benefit families of OOIDA members

By Mark Schremmer, Land Line staff writer | 4/6/2017

The overwhelming success of the OOIDA Mary Johnston Scholarship served as a focus of the scholarship advisory committee’s meeting on Wednesday, April 5, in Grain Valley, Mo.

Starting in 1998, the program has awarded about $295,000 in scholarship awards to 91 students who are the children, grandchildren or legal dependents of OOIDA members.

Each year, one $2,000 scholarship and four $1,000 scholarships are awarded. The funds are transferred directly to the student’s selected institution and be renewed for a total of four years.

Many of the committee members remarked about how much the program has meant to the students and to the families of truck drivers.

“This scholarship has allowed students to finish their education debt free,” committee member Steve Bixler said. “It’s a big deal to finish school without any debt.”

Andrew King, of the OOIDA Foundation, told the committee that many of the students have eventually gone on to further their education with master’s and doctorate degrees.

Many of the scholarship winners have provided testimonials to the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, thanking the scholarship program for its efforts.

Kevin McCoy, an attorney for Titleist; Danyon Brunk, a diesel mechanic; and Samantha Jones, a marketing coordinator for Roane Alliance, were some of the past winners to write in and thank OOIDA for the assistance in continuing their education.

Committee member Paula Chambers said it’s great to know that a variety of students have benefited from the scholarship.

“This is to help trucking families, and we want the students to know that they don’t have to have a 4.0 grade-point average or be the homecoming king to get a scholarship,” she said.

The names of the winners for the 2017 awards will soon be announced.

Donations to the scholarship fund can be made here.

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