2019 SDATAT Scholarship Essay Winners

Each year the South Dakota Association of Towns and Townships Scholarship Committee decides upon a challenging topic for SDATAT members graduating seniors to submit an essay and compete for one of two scholarships awarded.

This year, we wanted to encourage young people to become involved at the township level by researching and reporting upon the history, role, organizational structure of townships and attend one of their local township meetings.

What a pleasure, but yet a difficult challenge it was for the committee to read through each essay and select the top two winners!

Sara Capp,
from Big Stone City was selected for the 1st place award of $1000. Sara graduated from Milbank High School and is the daughter of LeRoy and Kate Capp from Grant County, Big Stone Township. Sara will attend Northern State University with a major in accounting this fall. She has been active in Milbank FFA and a letter of recommendation stated “...Sara is an outstanding example of a young, modern woman… sets high goals and worked to accomplish them through preparation and practice…” ; Sara also is an accomplished pianist, having participated in National Guild A
uditions for the past seven years. She is viewed as a “dependable, pleasant, responsible … and grateful person “.

Summer Parker,
from Clear Lake was selected for the 2nd place award of $500. Summer graduated from Deuel High School and is the daughter of Chris and Tami Parker, Deuel County, Hidewood Township. She will attend Lake Area Technical Institute with a major in Ag Business. Summer has been active in Future FarmerSummer_Parkers of America, Deuel County 4– H and Rodeo, having won many awards in roping with her horse Dynamite. She has also developed her own herd of cows, with her first loan for three bred heifers at the age of 10. A letter of recommendation described Summer as “hard working, trustworthy, honest, reliable, easy to get along with, attention to detail and a good communicator.”

We wish Sara and Summer the very best in their educational pursuits!

About the SDATAT 
Scholarship Program. . .

When Did it Begin?

The SDATAT Scholarship program was started in 2003 and began as two separate $500 scholarships, then was revised the following year to award a single $1000 award. In 2013 it was once again revised to be one $1000  and one $500 scholarship.


Who Can Apply? 

Any senior high school student who resides in South Dakota and is currently attending a South Dakota public, private, parochial high school or home school program is eligible.  The student must use the scholarship for a college, university or vocational school which has a physical presence in South Dakota; and lives in a town or township that is a current member of SDATAT.


What Are Some of the Guidelines?  

Essays must be no more than 500 words and must be typed with double spacing. Applicants can not name themselves, their school, town or township, or their local officials in the essay. Essays will be judged on originality, knowledge of subject matter in relationship to the title, correct grammar, spelling and punctuation; and finally, the application may be accompanied by no more than two, one-page support letters.


How Are the Winners Chosen?  

As the scholarships are received at the SDATAT Office the Dep. Admin Director will go through each submission to be sure all the guidelines are met and disqualifying any that are not. The qualifying essays are numbered and then sent on to the Scholarship Committee. Only the essays are forwarded to the Scholarship Committee to assure anonymity. After the Scholarship Committee chooses a winner the number is given to the Dep. Admin. Director and the name is released.


When and How is the Scholarship Paid? 

The scholarship award will be paid to the appropriate financial aid office upon receipt of verification of enrollment at a SD college, university or technical school in September of the winner’s second year of study.





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