Community Scholarship Foundation’s adjustment pays off

The Forest Lake Area Community Scholarship Foundation recently awarded 97 scholarships totaling $102,000. Ninety-two recipients earned CSF scholarships, which were announced at the high school’s Academic Awards and Hall of Fame Ceremony June 2.

The foundation in 2012 eclipsed the $1 million mark in scholarship giving since 1973, but its leadership decided to tweak the formula heading into the 2014 campaign. In light of rising education costs, and with a desire to have scholarships retain a significant value, the CSF Board of Directors approved an increase in its base scholarships from $500 to $1,000.

“Doubling the size of our scholarships posed a challenge to the foundation to remain significant to the community in the number of scholarships awarded and required that our donors recognize the need to increase the base scholarship and hopefully respond generously,” said CSF President Lee Sinna.

The strategy worked. While the number of scholarships dipped by about a fourth this year, the combined dollar amount rose by $7,000.

“Judging from the response of our donors and our scholarship recipients this year, the decision to increase the size of our scholarships was indeed a good one,” Sinna said.

CSF scholarships are funded by local businesses and individuals, either annually or through one-time endowment donations. Scholarship applicants can be high school seniors, post-graduates, GED recipients, or any resident of the Forest Lake School District pursuing a postsecondary degree. See for more information.