The Oregon Nurseries Foundation announces its 2019 scholarship recipients, who represent the green industry’s leaders and managers of tomorrow.
We know our nation can’t be prosperous without young people showing the initiative to learn, grow and enhance agricultural production. That’s why the Oregon Nurseries Foundation (ONF) rewards students for working towards their goals. In reviewing this year’s scholarship applications, we have read the personal stories of many unique students. If those stories are any indication, then the future of our green industry is very bright. Our applicants submitted detailed essays explaining how they are investing extra time and energy in their lives towards the pursuit of a career in horticulture or a related field. For the 2019–20 academic year, the ONF has awarded scholarships to 15 exemplary students who have remained dedicated to their academic achievement — frequently while still playing active roles in the nursery and greenhouse sector.
|Taylor Ames has grown up in the nursery industry in Oregon and has an interest in viticulture and enology. She will be a sophomore at Oregon State University in the fall and is passionate about staying within the industry. Taylor was awarded the Bill Egan Memorial Award.|
|Dylan Arritola will be entering his senior year at Oregon State University and plans to graduate with a degree in agricultural sciences and a minor in horticulture. Dylan is no stranger to the industry; having grown up in the Woodburn Nursery & Azaleas and Fessler Farms family. He has made the Dean’s List at OSU over the last three years. He has been awarded the Woodburn Nursery I and Retail Chapter III awards.|
|Helene Dondero is an agriculture science major at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and is entering her senior year. Helene has grown up being exposed to the horticulture industry through involvement with her mother’s flower shop and through local growers. She was awarded the Larry Fitzgerald Memorial Scholarship as well as the Nurseries Memorial Award for her achievements.|
|Corinne Heimuller is a graduate of Newberg High School and will be entering Oregon State University in the fall as a freshman. She is fascinated with horticulture, from tissue culture to cutting to breeding. Corinne was awarded the Woodburn Nursery II Award to begin her horticulture studies and hopes to raise awareness on the importance of plants and their uses.|
|Emily Iverson grew up working on her family’s farm, Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm, and wants to continue the growth of the business with her completed education in agriculture. She will be a junior at Oregon State University and was awarded the Sid & Cindy Miles Nursery Award as well as the Clackamas Chapter Ed Wood Memorial Award.|
|Susan Johnson will be a senior at Portland Community College while simultaneously running her own residential landscape design and maintenance company. She is also a Master Gardener. Susan was awarded Joseph H. Klupenger Award to assist in fulfilling her goals as a landscape professional in the horticulture industry.|
|Michael Kehoe is a senior at Portland Community College studying landscape design and environmental management. His interests include “green infrastructure” to improve water quality, environmental restoration, and restoration projects that manage landscapes in sustainable ways. Michael was awarded the Retail I Award.|
|Eric van Klaveren has been awarded the Willamette Chapter Award and will be entering his junior year at Oregon State University. Eric has been involved in the family business, Van’s Nursery, from a young age and plans to continue his future in horticulture. He plans to effectively apply his electrical engineering degree, with a minor in horticulture, as a useful, technical skill within the industry.|
|Savanna Mead will be a sophomore at West Virginia University pursuing a degree in horticulture. She hopes to pursue a career in ornamental plan propagation in a greenhouse or nursery setting. Her extended interest is in horticulture consulting for a landscape architecture firm. In addition, she is involved in the WVU Symphony Orchestra with a cello performance minor. Savannah has been awarded the Mt. Hood Chapter II Award.|
|Kristin Passey is a horticulture major entering her sophomore year at Brigham Young University-Idaho. She has a strong interest in owning and operating her own nursery and aquaponics greenhouse and has a special interest in starting plants. Kristin is the recipient of the Mt. Hood Chapter I Award. Kristin has also been a piano teacher and member of the Utah Music Teachers Association.|
|Emily Purdin has a career goal to design therapeutic gardens and is currently enrolled in Portland Community College’s landscape design program heading into her junior year. She has enrolled in the horticultural therapy program as well. Emily is the recipient of the Royal Boltman Memorial Award to help continue her education.|
|Jimmy Reyes has transferred to Oregon State University to continue his education towards a degree in agricultural sciences. He is actively involved in his family’s business, Palmer Creek Nursery, and balances school and work with a positive attitude. Jimmy has been awarded the Nursery Employee Award.|
|Jason Robertson will be a junior at Clackamas Community College working towards his associate’s degree in horticulture. A veteran of the Persian Gulf War, Jason is passionate about opening a community greenhouse that would offer outreach and training to those with mental and physical challenges. He is currently an assistant with the Horticulture Department at CCC and has been awarded the Retail Chapter II Award to assist in his efforts to reach his goals.|
|Stephen Stresow, the youngest Master Gardener in Texas history, is pursuing a degree in plant science (concentration in organic agriculture and ecology of managed landscapes) with a minor in soil science at Cornell University this fall. He hopes to focus on urban agriculture and eventually shift to academics as a horticulture professor and faculty advisor. Among an impressive list of achievements, he will be a research assistant for the second summer at Texas A&M AgriLife Research Center before entering Cornell as a freshman. He has been awarded with the Clackamas Chapter Nurseries Foundation Award..|
|Rylie Thayer is enrolled in the horticulture therapy program at Portland Community College and will be junior this coming fall. Rylie’s goal is to become a registered horticulture therapist that promotes health and wellness through plants and gardens. She volunteers broadly within different horticulture programs, is Backyard Habitat certified, and is working to certify her own home garden. Rylie is the recipient of the Emerald Empire Chapter Award for her continued efforts toward her passion.|
How to apply
The Oregon Association of Nurseries and the Oregon Nurseries Foundation accepts scholarship applications during winter term. The scholarships are awarded by the ONF’s committee each spring. Student scholarship applications are evaluated based on career interests, scholastic aptitude, and financial need.
The next cycle of applications will open in January. Applications are due no later than April 1, 2020. Please visit www.oan.org/onf to learn more about the scholarship program and application criteria, and to download an application.