EAST LANSING, Mich. – Feb. 5 – Eleven student-athletes from Michigan High School Athletic Association Class C and D member schools have been selected to receive scholarships through its Scholar-Athlete Award program.
Farm Bureau Insurance, in its 24th year of sponsoring the award, will give a $1,000 college scholarship to 32 individuals who represent their member school in at least one sport in which the Association sponsors a postseason tournament. The first 30 scholarships are awarded proportionately by school classification and the number of student-athletes involved in those classes; also, there are two at-large honorees which can come from any classification.
Each of the scholarship recipients will be honored at halftime ceremonies of the Class C Boys Basketball Final game March 23 at the Breslin Student Events Center in East Lansing. Commemorative medallions will be given to other finalists in recognition of their accomplishments.
Branch County has two of those recipients, Kylei Ratkowski and Jesse Anderson. Here’s a look at their school careers and a quote from their essay:
Kylei Ratkowski, Bronson. Three-time letterwinner in volleyball and basketball, serving as team captain in both sports. Also won a letter in track and field. Was all-conference and all-area in volleyball as a senior, and also a third-team all-state selection. Was Homecoming Queen in 2012. Class treasurer throughout high school and served for four years on student council, the last two years as vice president. Active in National Honor Society, Varsity Club and 4-H; and served as an officer in all three groups. Volunteers to instruct and officiate in youth girls volleyball and basketball and to work with a local food pantry and visit shut-ins. Plans medical studies at the University of Notre Dame or Michigan State University.
Essay Quote: “Athletics is about more than winning, it is about creating winners with the right attitude. It is about developing athletes that genuinely care about their opponents and do the right thing when put to the test. Sportsmanship is essential to educational athletics and we as athletes and fan of athletics need to do all we can to insure sportsmanship remains a significant part of every game.”
Jesse Anderson, Union City. A four-year performer in both cross country and track and field. Helped track team to last three Big Eight Conference titles, and second place finishes at MHSAA Finals. Won all-conference honors as part of two relay teams and in two individual events. Was most valuable on 2012 cross country team. President of his class for three consecutive years, and vice president of National Honor Society. Active as a volunteer with local Red Cross and March of Dimes, and a member of his church youth group and 4-H. Served as editor of school yearbook. Won DAR Good Citizen Award and was twice selected as school Student of the Month. Plans medical studies at Grand Valley State University.
Essay Quote: “To truly know what sportsmanship is, you must be put in situations where being a good sportsman is not the easiest thing to do and making, at times, the unpopular choice to do what is right instead of what is easy.”