SPASH graduate receives $10,000 Herb Kohl scholarship
By Joe Bachman
STEVENS POINT — One of the area’s most promising graduates was awarded the prestigious Herb Kohl Scholarship in April.
Alexis Ford is a graduate of SPASH, and the 18-year-old was one of only two to receive the $10,000 scholarship in Portage County. Ford, who is the daughter of parents James and Kim Ford, has been in competitive cheerleading for 10 years, and also excelled at volleyball and soccer at SPASH.
However, her qualifications for the scholarship far surpass a decade in athletics; Ford is also active in her community as a teaching assistant in the UWSP Youth-in-College program, Operation Bootstrap, a leadership intern a Camp Invention, as well as the Wisconsin Association of School Councils.
A pianist of 14 years, Ford currently works as a local lifeguard. The scholarship awards students based on athletics, music/speech, community involvement, extracurriculars, as well as character — a trait Ford credits her parents with teaching her.
“My parents instilled in me the importance of being involved in the community and giving back to those who have supported me,” said Ford, who states that her involvement in everyone of these areas have been developing since childhood.
The application process is a rigid at that, and included not only a resume, but an essay based on the five criterias, which included three letters of recommendations from a teacher, principal, and community member. After a strict and extensive process for judging candidates, Ford received word in April that she was one of only 191 recipients state-wide.
“I was certainly very excited when I opened the letter and discovered I received the generous scholarship,” said Ford. “I am honored to receive such a prestigious scholarship and thankful for Senator Herb Kohl’s dedication and generosity to improving Wisconsin education. It was an incredible honor to meet Senator Kohl and to see the genuine dedication and commitment that he has in promoting educational goals for Wisconsin students.”
Ford will be attending St. Norbert College after graduation, where she is currently enrolled in the honors program and will major in Elementary Education with a minor in Spanish. Ford looks to eventually become an elementary school teacher.
“The fact that I am choosing education as a future career path makes this prestigious scholarship even more meaningful to me,” said Ford. “I am excited to attend college and look forward to all the new opportunities that will present itself in the near future.”