Each year, the Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) awards scholarships to residents of the Mat-Su Borough interested in pursuing health-related or nonprofit management careers. These scholarships are intended to encourage Mat-Su residents to complete a degree or certificate program that emphasizes health and/or wellness or nonprofit management by helping to defray the cost of education. Application deadline is February 24, 2017: see How to Apply below.
Awards for traditional MSHF scholarships are based on each applicant’s stated career goal and financial need as demonstrated by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The maximum amount awarded per student for these scholarships is $20,000. New for 2017 is the Mat-Su Scholars Award, which is also based on the applicant’s stated career goal, but not on financial need. Mat-Su Scholars Awards require an essay and interview as part of the online application process and may be for as much as $10,000 each for up to six applicants who meet specific criteria:
- Current High School Students: The Annie Demming Scholarship is reserved for a promising student currently enrolled in high school and planning to attend college. Demming was a part-time nurse at Valley Hospital and later the head of its medical records department. She served in that role until her retirement in 1987.
- Behavioral Health Major: The Vivian "Babe" Shaver Scholarship will be awarded to a student pursuing a degree in behavioral health. Shaver was employed at Valley Hospital as an environmental services worker for many years.
- Graduate-Level Applicants: The Ya Ne Dah Ah /K’tl’egh’i Sukdu Scholarship will be awarded to a graduate-level student. The Ya Ne Dah Ah /K’tl’egh’i Sukdu scholarship was created to honor Alaska Native traditions and culture in the Mat-Su. Ya Ne Dah Ah / K’tl’egh’i Sukdu loosely translates as “ancient stories/remaining stories of our people.” Ya Ne Dah Ah is Ahtna and K’tl’egh’i Sukdu is Dena’ina.
- Hospital Administration: The George V. Larson, III Scholarship will be awarded to a student pursuing a degree in hospital administration or non-profit management. Larson, former CEO of Valley Hospital Association, was known for his deep humility, care for employees, and servant leadership. He explored ways to finance a new hospital for Mat-Su. He cemented a capital partnership that enabled Mat-Su Regional Medical Center to be built, changing the landscape of health care in Mat-Su forever.
- Physician Assistant: The Jessica Stevens Scholarship will be awarded to a student pursuing a physician assistant degree. Stevens was the CEO of Sunshine Clinic and worked tirelessly for 14 years to improve health care in the Upper Su. Her efforts transformed a single-provider clinic into a federally qualified community health center with a staff of 40 housed in a new, state-of-the-art facility.
- Nursing: The Darlene Reed Scholarship will be awarded to a student pursuing a degree in nursing. Reed was a long time public health nurse in Palmer and was instrumental in the early years of the Mat-Su Agency Partnership and many other community initiatives.
Please review the scholarship eligibility requirements below, and then proceed to the How to Apply section of this page.
MSHF Scholarship eligibility requirements include the following:
- United States citizenship
- Mat-Su Borough residency for minimum of one year (current to application)
- Eligible for an Alaska Permanent Dividend Fund
- Minimum half-time student status at an accredited college, university, or medical training program
- Selection of a health care or nonprofit management career choice that matches the workforce needs of providers in the Mat-Su Borough
- Interest in the fields of health care or nonprofit management as demonstrated by the applicant's responses to questions posed in the application
- Successful completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid - FAFSA (the FAFSA is not required for Vocational Scholarship applicants).
- GPA: There is no minimum GPA for first time applicants. For returning awardees a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 is required. Returning awardees must provide an official transcript for no less than one complete year. If they have not completed a full year at time of application, they must provide college transcripts for any college courses they have completed plus their high school transcripts.
The Mat-Su Health Foundation also offers Vocational Scholarships for attendance in a health or wellness related or nonprofit management vocational or certificate program. Applications for Vocational Scholarships are accepted year-round and require an essay of 250 words or less that demonstrates interest in a health or nonprofit field that matches the workforce needs of the the Mat-Su Borough. The number of scholarships given each year and the amount of each award varies.
Disqualified Applicants For All MSHF Scholarships:
- MSHF directors, officers, employees and members of the Scholarship Committee, and their family members
- Mat-Su Regional Medical Center Board of Directors members and their family members
- Mat-Su Regional Board of Trustee Members and their family members
How to Apply:
All scholarship applications are submitted online. Applications for vocational scholarships are accepted year-round.
To apply for an Academic Scholarship:
- The application period for 2017 Academic Scholarships opens on January 1, 2017 and closes on February 24, 2017.
- The application may be accessed by clicking here.
- There is a single application for both the traditional Academic Scholarship and the new Mat-Su Scholars Award. Applicants will be given the opportunity to indicate whether they wish to be considered for both programs during the application process. Those electing to apply for the Mat-Su Scholars Award will be required to submit an essay and may be required to participate in an interview.
To apply for a Vocational Scholarship:
- Vocational Scholarship applications are accepted year-round.
- Fill out and submit the Vocational Scholarship application.