The SSDF 2020 Scholarship Application will be available on December 6, 2019

Due date will be February 19, 2020

Sedalia School District Foundation Scholarships are open to students graduating from Smith-Cotton High School or Whittier Alternative High School.  Scholarships are a one-time award unless otherwise specified.

Have a question about the application process? Email the Foundation at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

SSDF Scholarship 2019At the Smith-Cotton High School 2019 Senior Awards Night the Sedalia School District Foundation awarded $54,450 in 73 individual scholarships.

List of Scholarships

Allen-Miller Family Scholarship- Smith-Cotton alumni Travis and Amanda Miller started the Allen-Miller Family Scholarship with the hopes of giving back to individuals that need the assistance the most. This scholarship is renewable and is open to students pursuing any degree and with any GPA. Applicants must show financial need, have been actively involved at Smith-Cotton, and actively involved in the community, which can consist of an after school job.

Alumni Scholarship applicants must be the child or grandchild of a Smith-Cotton graduate and must include alumni’s name and graduation year on the application form.

Joe Arbisi Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of coach and educator Joe Arbisi who led the Bandits swim team for 24 years.  Candidates must have been on the Smith-Cotton High School swim team for a minimum of one year. Preference will be given to candidates that plan to be on the swim team in college and received swim lessons from Coach Arbisi.

Bill G. Arnold Athletic Scholarship honors a 1950 graduate of Smith-Cotton High School. Bill was a pitcher for the Smith-Cotton High School baseball team and quarterback for the football team all four years of high school. Scholarship applicants must have participated in high school sports, have a minimum of a “C” average, and provide a letter of recommendation from their coach.

Allen Bess Instrumental Music Scholarship was established through gifts from the estate of Smith-Cotton Class of 1947 graduate Allen Bess. This scholarship is open to a student pursuing a degree in instrumental music. Applicants must graduate in the top 50% of their class, be actively involved in instrumental music groups in the community, have been actively involved in orchestra, marching band, concert band, pep band, or jazz band at Smith-Cotton High School. Students with financial need will be given priority.

Morris K. Byrum Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of Smith-Cotton High School principal Morris K. Byrum. The scholarship is open to students pursuing any degree and with any GPA. This scholarship is available to help students with financial assistance in receiving a post-secondary education either at a college or trade school.

Gerald O. and Helen E. Cecil Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of Gerald O. Cecil and his wife Helen. Gerald O. Cecil was one of the founders of the Sedalia Noonday Optimist Club and a distinguished past president. Candidates must be college-bound seniors attending any accredited university who are graduating in the top 50% of their senior class, have demonstrated respect and appreciation of Sedalia through community service and shows interest in local, state, and national issues, demonstrated respect for all members of their class and teachers, participated in public speaking or oratorical events, participated in high school activities or groups, and demonstrated a positive, optimistic, can-do attitude ideally in spite of adversity or challenge. Students with financial need will be given priority. Applicants must write an essay referencing the Optimist Creed.

Cedar Hill Scholarship was established by alumni from Smith-Cotton High School class of 1971. It is open to college-bound Smith-Cotton seniors graduating in the top 50% of their class who have demonstrated their respect and appreciation of Sedalia through participation in a civic organization or other community services.  Candidates must also have participated in diverse high school activities or groups and demonstrated respect for all members of their class and teachers.

Coffelt Family Scholarship has been established in honor of long-time Sedalia School District #200 music teacher Helen Coffelt and in memory of her son 1981 SC graduate Stephen Coffelt. The scholarship is renewable for up to three academic years. Applicants must be pursuing a degree in music, business,  or attending a technical school. Applicants must have a GPA of 2.75 or above.

Cordry Family Scholarship has been established to honor Charlotte Cordry and her life-long professional dedication to ensuring that students with disabilities reach their full potential.  This scholarship will be available to students who received special education services and can be used to support them in any post-secondary program, including college, trade or technical school or other vocational programs that leads to gainful employment.

Coach Ross Dey Baseball Scholarship was established in memory of educator and Coach Ross Dey. It is awarded to Smith-Cotton High School baseball players who have earned a minimum of two (2) varsity letters in baseball and intend to play collegiate ball.  This scholarship is renewable on a semester-by-semester basis, excluding summer, with a 2.5 grade point average and the continuation of collegiate baseball play.

Jane McCurdy Dugan Memorial Scholarship is open to all applicants showing financial need and academic potential.  Consideration will be given to those with special circumstances.

Frances Elizabeth Rapp Ely Scholarship is open to all applicants showing financial need pursuing any degree who were actively involved at Smith-Cotton High School and in the community.

Bill Evans/Beryl Thomas Memorial Scholarship was established due to the longtime love of music that has enriched the members of both families. The Scholarship is open to students pursuing a music degree.

Perry Conrad Fairfax Athletic-Academic Scholarship is restricted to a student attending the University of Missouri College Of Engineering.  Candidates must be an SCHS football player who attended SCHS all four (4) years and who started in at least one home football game their senior year.  Recipient will be selected from the highest cumulative GPA from all applicants.

Franklin Family Scholarship was established to honor the dedicated teachers that taught the Franklin family at Smith-Cotton High School. The scholarship is awarded based on moral character, public service, financial need, leadership and academic excellence.

Thom Fuller Memorial Scholarship recognizes a 1982 Smith-Cotton graduate who expressed his talent as an artist, musician, actor, director, and scenic and lighting designer. The recipient must be a Sedalia School District senior who has been actively involved in the Smith-Cotton High School theatre department either on or behind the stage. The scholarship is open to students pursuing any degree and with any GPA. First priority will be given to those with financial need.

Jordan Ali Halane Scholarship is open to Sedalia School District graduates pursuing a music degree of any kind. Jordan began music lessons at a young age, soon displaying a passion and talent for singing and playing piano. Applicants must have a GPA of 2.75 and creatively illustrate their desire to pursue music at the collegiate level. They may submit an essay, a video recording of a performance, or a composition, etc.

H.W. Harris Scholarship applicants must be attending the University of Missouri at Columbia. Applicants must submit an essay describing why they are applying for the H.W. Harris Scholarship and why they desire to attend the University of Missouri-Columbia (MU). They must exhibit financial need and include in essay any special financial need circumstances. Applicants should have a strong scholastic record and ACT/SAT scores. Student should have been involved in extracurricular activities which require commitment and challenge, and student should be specific in essay in describing how they took a leadership position. Student must exhibit some consistent work-related activities which helped support the student. Student must be of high moral character and the school must be able to vouch for this.

Myron T. Herrick Memorial Scholarship was established by the children of Myron T. Herrick and is open to a graduating senior with a minimum GPA of 3.0 who will be attending the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg.

Jim & Judy Holman Scholarship was established in memory of two ardent supporters of Smith-Cotton High School sports and activities. They loved following their kids and eleven grandchildren’s sports and activities. Judy was especially involved with show choir, dance teams, and soccer teams. The scholarship is open to students pursuing any degree.

Donna & Larry Howard Memorial Scholarship honors two lives committed to family, friends, and supporting the Sedalia School District. The scholarship is awarded to one (1) male and one (1) female athlete in any sport.  Applicants must show academic and leadership aptitude. A recommendation letter from high school coach must accompany applicant’s submission.

C.H. & Pauline Joy Scholarship is restricted to students pursuing an agriculturally related degree such as farming, pre-veterinarian science, agri-business or agri-science.

Glenn M. (Mack) and Dorothy M. (Pierce) Kell Scholarships for Music and Academics was established in honor of a husband and wife who were Smith-Cotton graduates. Two scholarships are awarded to Smith-Cotton High School seniors. One is open to all applicants and is based on academic aptitude; the second scholarship is restricted to an applicant pursuing a degree in music.

Charles A. Ledgerwood Scholarship was established in memory of life sciences teacher Charles Ledgerwood who taught at Smith-Cotton for 35 years. It is open to applicants pursuing a life science related degree such as conservation, biology, medical, etc.  A minimum of a 3.0 GPA is required and applicants will be considered on campus and community involvement. Application includes an essay of 250 words or less to articulate goals, experiences, or motivating factors that lead to their career choice and discuss what impact they hope to achieve by pursuing their chosen career.

Sharon Maggard-Mateja Memorial Scholarship honors a creative woman who loved to sketch, paint, and decorate. This scholarship was established by her bridge club friends and is restricted to students pursuing a degree in an art related field or who have studied and shown proficiency in the visual arts in high school.

Major Saver is a community-oriented corporation dedicated to providing a premier fundraising program that benefits schools, students, and community partners. From their proceeds of cards sales in the Sedalia School District, Major Saver awards two scholarships to Smith-Cotton High School seniors. Applicants must be students pursuing a degree in education and attending a Missouri college or university.  Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.5.

Eva Mothersbaugh Memorial Scholarship is awarded to an applicant that shows financial need.  Pursuit of a degree in the communication arts is preferred but not required.

Rob Parkhurst Memorial Scholarship was started by the children of Rob Parkhurst because their father valued education and hard work. Two scholarships are awarded and it is open to students pursuing any degree.  Applicants must have a minimum of 3.5 GPA and demonstrate respect and appreciation of Sedalia through civic or community service. Applicants must also be involved in SCHS activities or groups.  In addition students must answer the following in essay form:

  1. Who in your life has been your biggest influence and why?
  2. From a financial standpoint, what impact would this scholarship have on your education?
  3. Describe your most meaningful achievements and how they related to your field of student and future goals.

Steve Schilb “It’s Never too Late to do the Right Thing” Scholarship honors Mr. Schilb who taught history and constitutional law at Smith-Cotton High School for 17 years. Remembered for his life motto, “It’s never too late to do the right thing,” Mr. Schilb believed in, inspired, and shaped young people to become their best. Applicants pursuing a degree in education and/or with financial need will be given preference. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Skip Schulz Say You Will Scholarship was established in memory of coach and educator Ralph “Skip” Schulz. Skip Schulz’s philosophy was “Say You Will and prove it.” The Skip Schulz Say You Will Scholarship criteria is an essay where applicants write four paragraphs explaining how they will use these words of encouragement and this scholarship to succeed in college.

Sedalia School District Foundation Scholarship is awarded by the SSDF Scholarship Committee and is open to all applicants.  Applicants must show financial need and participate in the community. A complete teacher recommendation form is required. In addition students must answer the following in essay form:

Give us three (3) lessons or suggestions that you have learned from your high school experience that you would share with incoming high school students

Please note:  Submissions must be typed

Mark Shelby Memorial Scholarship was founded by Mr. Shelby’s wife and children. Mr. Shelby taught at Smith-Cotton High School for 27 years. He was also a Smith-Cotton and Mizzou graduate. This Scholarship is open to a deserving student attending the University of Missouri with a minimum of a 3.5 GPA.

Seth Wagenknecht Memorial Scholarship remembers Seth who was a 1973 graduate of Smith-Cotton. This scholarship is open to college-bound seniors attending any accredited university and graduating in the top 50% of their senior class.  Applicants must demonstrate respect and appreciation of Sedalia through civic or community service. Applicants must also participate in diverse high school activities or groups and demonstrate respect for all members of their class and teachers.

Joan Walker Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of a respected educator at Smith-Cotton High School. The scholarship is restricted to students pursuing a secondary education degree with an emphasis in English and intent on becoming a high school English teacher.

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