There’s often a story or purpose behind new ideas. It’s true for the inaugural Inspired Woman Scholarship, which will be awarded later this spring. The financial aid will assist students of higher education who are pursuing careers in print, broadcast, online, and visual journalism.

The idea for starting the fund was inspired during a conversation with members of the Inspired Woman advisory board. While brainstorming ways to give back to the community, the ladies suggested many worthy ideas, but we didn’t settle on anything final. Jody Kerzman and I were co-owners of the magazine at the time, and in the days that followed the advisory board meeting, we continued to toss around ideas. During one conversation, Jody wondered out loud, “What if it could be a scholarship?” We were both college journalism students once upon a time, so that made it an obvious choice. But more than anything, a scholarship fits the mission of the magazine perfectly. We agreed — it was the best idea, and we established the Inspired Woman Scholarship Fund.

Inspired Woman magazine contributed to the fund, we held a fundraiser, and we invited readers to help build the fund through subscription options. Some subscribers paid $75 or $100 and received their magazine for the subscription price of $37. The remaining funds went into the scholarship fund. The North Dakota Community Foundation (a non-profit tax-exempt corporation) manages the money, and the first scholarship will be awarded this spring. The intent is to continue growing the fund and supporting future journalism students.

Second year college undergraduates through graduate students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are eligible to apply. Preference will be given to students who exhibit leadership, steadfast work ethic, desire and willingness to learn and grow personally and professionally, creativity in writing, journalistic integrity, and involvement with journalism activities that are collegiate or community based. Inspired Woman has assembled a committee of professionals who will review the applications, determine the finalists, and choose the scholarship recipients.

The application deadline is April 1. Eligible students should apply online at NDCF.net. Click “Receive” and choose Inspired Woman Scholarship.

I look forward to seeing the talent and work of the next generation of journalists, and I’m happy Inspired Woman can play a part.

Donations to the Inspired Woman Scholarship fund are tax-deductible and can be made online at ndcf.net or mail a check to:
NDCF
PO Box 387
711 Riverwood Dr, Suite 2
Bismarck, ND 58502-0387