BECU offers multiple scholarships

Financial support awarded to BECU student members who demonstrate community service, leadership

Project+director+for+Crimson+Community+Grants+Kelly+Demand%2C+center%2C+says+there+is+no+deadline+to+apply+for+aid+but+encourages+students+to+apply+when+they+have+need.

COURTESY OF WSU PHOTO SERVICES

Project director for Crimson Community Grants Kelly Demand, center, says there is no deadline to apply for aid but encourages students to apply when they have need.

JAKOB THORINGTON, Evergreen reporter

At least 25 scholarships worth $2,500 each are available to Boeing Employees’ Credit Union members and WSU students this year. The scholarships are funded through the BECU Foundation.

Rachel Van Noord, BECU Foundation executive director, said a minimum of 25 scholarships will be awarded this year; however, that number is likely to be higher.

She said 80 scholarships were awarded to BECU student members last year. The foundation has not yet decided on how many scholarships will be awarded this year, she said.

The funds for foundation scholarships are provided from fundraising and member donations each year, which determines how many scholarships will be awarded, Van Noord said.

Out of the 80 scholarships that were awarded last year, one of those recipients was a student attending WSU, BECU communications specialist Avery FitzPatrick said.

In addition to foundation scholarships, BECU also reached a five-year agreement with WSU last August to provide financial aid programs and scholarships exclusive to WSU students.

Later in 2019, BECU announced its members could receive a WSU themed credit or debit card. This is a treatment that was exclusive to the University of Washington for several years.

“There’s been a lot of buzz around those cards,” Van Noord said.

Each of the foundation scholarships are renewable for two years, except for the Washington State Opportunity Scholarship which is worth up to $22,500. This scholarship is available for students pursuing a degree in healthcare, STEM or trade fields, according to BECU.

“We know there are organizations that award scholarships based on the workforce demands of the future,” Van Noord said. “There is no need for the BECU Foundation to recreate that scholarship program. We’d rather provide some of our funds to an organization that has that program in a robust place.”

The $2,500 scholarships are awarded to BECU student members who demonstrate community service and potential in leadership and academics.

She said the foundation was set up in 1995 to help its members pursue post-secondary education.

“From a financial health perspective … a two-year or four-year credential really sets something up for lifetime of increased earnings potential,” she said. “When we think about the long-term financial health of our membership, we want to provide as many support systems as we can both directly and indirectly.”

She said the scholarship is intended for students already pursuing their degree and encourages upperclassmen to apply for it.

The deadline to apply for these scholarships is Feb. 28.