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Perry Congrats

Katie Perry is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 High School Scholarship. Katie is from La Grande, a graduate of La Grande High School, and would like to take this time to recognize her mom, dad, and siblings (Carter, Landon, Brooke, Tyler) by saying “they are the best family ever!”

Katie is headed to Brigham Young University to earn a bachelor’s degree in Biology and then pursue a doctorate’s degree in radiology followed by a residency. When asked why this particular career path, Katie explained that she would like to be a radiologist because of her love of science, challenging herself, and helping other people.

Katie’s plan for this summer includes working, helping remodel the family house, self-improvement, and outdoor adventures!

What has Katie learned about herself in recent months? “My worth is not measured by my accomplishments because there are things that are much more important! The more I focus on the most important things, like serving others, the happier I am.”

In closing, Katie said “I’m honored and indescribably grateful to be a recipient of this Soroptimist scholarship! I’m so grateful for the generosity that’s empowering me to achieve my goals and make a difference in the world!”

Andrews Congrats

Emily Andrews is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 EOU Continuation Scholarship. Emily is from La Grande and would like to recognize and thank her family, specifically parents Brenda and Jerad Andrews, for always supporting her and encouraging her dreams, as well as Soroptimist Int’l of La Grande for believing in her and helping further her education.

Emily is currently a Junior attending Eastern Oregon University, studying to receive a Bachelor of Arts with a major in English, and a minor in English for Speakers of Other Languages. Upon completion of her undergraduate degree, Emily plans to attend EOU in order to pursue her Masters degree in teaching.

When asked why this career, Emily said: “After I finish college I want to stay in the U.S. post- graduation and teach English at the high school level. Simultaneously, I would like to teach English classes in the evenings for non-native speakers wanting to improve their linguistic skills. Teaching has always been a dream of mine because I want to inspire others and show them the importance of education. I want to make a difference and I think the best way to do that would be through teaching.”

This summer, Emily plans to continue working at Pierce Library and save money for school. Emily also intends to also read, write, and wakeboard as often as possible!

Asked what has she learned about herself in recent months, Emily responded with “I have learned a lot about myself  due to everything that has gone on in the world. I’m the kind of person who loves a schedule and a solid plan– that was thrown out the window this term, so I had to be willing to readjust in order to remain successful with my studies.”

In closing, Emily would like to again thank Soroptimist International of La Grande for this scholarship, saying: “it is inspiring to be a part of such an amazing organization that encourages women and girls to succeed.”

Summer Salute

(Technically summer does not commence for another nineteen days, but let’s go ahead and get this party started!) Three cheers for members celebrating SILG anniversaries this summer!

Peggy Anthony – 2016

Tori Gandy – 2005

Jacque Harvey – 2014

Vicky Hart – 2017

Shayla Hewitt – 2015

Mary Horn – 2016

Sam LeBold – 2016

Mara Kalat – 2019

Maria Moulton – 2015

Angie Neill – 2018

Teresa Penninger – 1995

Teresa Roberts – 2018

Tressa Seydel – 2007

Ashley Walker – 2012

Andrea Waldrop – 2016

Shannon Willmarth – 2013

Pat Wood – 2005


Witten Congrats

 Karley Witten is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving the 2020-2021 EOU Senior Scholarship.  A senior at Eastern Oregon University, Karley’s hometown is Cove, Oregon.
Karley would like to recognize her family for pushing her to pursue her goals: “I would like to specifically thank my parents, Randy and Julie Witten for raising me to always put my whole heart into everything I do and never give up. I want to thank my brother and sister for teaching me the patience I need for my future career. “
Karley is going into her senior year at EOU, enrolled in the undergraduate elementary education program. This educational path will lead her to become a third grade teacher working with students in a low-socioeconomic school district – with the plan of teaching for a few years and eventually going back to school in pursuit of a doctorate degree in order to become a professor of education at a university.
Why this career? When asked Karley said, “I have always had a heart for children and a passion to serve so becoming an elementary school teacher was a no-brainer for me. I want to help students in a low socioeconomic school district because oftentimes they get passed over and I want to be their advocate and provide them the best education possible.”
This summer Karley plans to work full time to continue to save money to pay for school, and also to work with students either through volunteering or through schooling opportunities as COVID-19 permits.
In the last few months, Karley has learned this about herself: “I have learned how to prioritize my time as well as learning how to be flexible. As school has been moved online I have had to change my school routine and adapt to the online learning platform. I have learned the skill of flexibility as I am participating in an online 2nd grade classroom and I have learned a lot about how to go with the flow.”
“In closing I want to thank SILG in providing me with an opportunity to enjoy my senior year with little financial stress. Providing scholarships to women in our community is an inspiration to many of us, on behalf of myself and all of the other recipients I want to say thank you.”

Madsen Congrats

Sophia Madsen is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 High School Scholarship. A graduate of La Grande High School, Sophia is originally from La Grande and would like to thank her parents, Mark and JoAnna Madsen, for always supporting and encouraging her to do her very best. Sophia would also like to thank Lezlie Wright and Julie Carpenter for assisting her so much on her preparation for life and college after high school.

Sophia’s educational plans include attending Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah, in the fall (hopefully on campus and not online), where she will be working towards earning a major in Communication Disorders and a minor in Family Life. After completing her first year of college, Sophia will go on a mission for the Church of Jesus Chris of Latter-day Saints, and then return to BYU to complete her education.

Asked why this career? Sophia says “I hope to become a Speech Pathologist, specifically with children. I’m excited to pursue this career! I’ve always loved working and spending time with children. I also experienced going to “speech class” when I was younger so I know how much positivity it can add to ones life.”

This summer Sophia will be working at the C&M Country Store in Island City to save as much money as she can to assist in her future plans for college and a mission.

And what has Sophia learned about herself in recent months?  “I have learned that I really enjoy spending time with family and friends, getting out in nature, and staying busy.”

In closing Sophia says that she “would like to thank the Soroptimist International of La Grande club once more for this amazing honor and opportunity.”

Bornstedt Congrats

Josie Bornstedt is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 High School Scholarship. Josie was born and raised in La Grande,  and would like to recognize her amazing family who have shown endless love and support throughout Josie’s life. Josie said “They hold a very special place in my heart.”

As a La Grande High School graduate of the class of 2020, Josie graduated with honors and also completed an art pathway. She is excited to be attending Eastern Oregon University in the fall and “knows that many doors and opportunities will be opened to me and I am ready to embrace all of it!”

When asked about her future educational path and career, Josie responded with: “I am very passionate about graphic design. While attending EOU I’ll be majoring in Art and seeking other internships and opportunities to help me develop the necessary skills to be a graphic designer. I want to pursue graphic design because of the impact I know it can make on my community and beyond. Art speaks to people in many different ways and there is a growing demand for graphic designers. Also, I’m interested in this occupation because of the variety and flexibility this field can offer me.”

This summer Josie will be working in the kitchen at Embers Brewhouse & Pub in Joseph, Oregon, also spending time outdoors rafting, hiking, paddle-boarding, seeing loved ones, friends, and riding horses.

What has Josie learned about herself in recent months?  “I’ve learned that I care about people so much and miss gathering as a community. I believe that my heart is being shaped during this time to be more present in the moment, more grateful, and living the life the way I was created to live- full of love and purpose.”

In closing, Josie is extremely grateful to receive this SILG scholarship and said “the community of Union County has and always will be very special to me. The phenomenal support, generosity, and kindness is inspiring to me and I’m looking forward to continuing my education at Eastern Oregon University!”

Gooderham Congrats

Kara Gooderham is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 EOU Continuation Scholarship. Kara is from La Grande and would like to thank her parents, grandparents and close friends for their never-ending support. Kara says “I am thankful to have people in my life who have always held me to a high standard and taught me to work hard and to challenge myself.”

Kara is currently pursuing a degree in Biology at Eastern Oregon University. After her undergraduate degree is complete,  Kara plans to obtain a masters degree in Communication Disorders/Speech & Language Pathology. Kara is also a member of the women’s soccer team at EOU. The team won the Cascade Collegiate Conference Championship again this year and made it to the Elite 8 Round of the NAIA National Tournament in Alabama.

When asked why this career, Kara explained, “My future career goal is to become a Speech & Language Pathologist in a rehab setting. I have done the MedQuest Program through EOU as well as several job shadows and volunteer hours. I enjoy the wide variety of patients that a Speech & Language Pathologist may work with and helping people regain or maintain their independence and quality of life.”

Kara’s summer plans include taking a couple of classes, working, enjoying the outdoors through boating, hiking, camping and spending time with her family and friends.

And what has Kara learned about herself in the last few months? “I have learned a lot! With the restrictions and stay-at-home order I have definitely learned to not take things for granted, and that sometimes you will have disappointment in your life and things won’t always go the way you want. This time has been a gift in some ways as it forced myself and others to slow down and appreciate the things and people in our lives.”

In closing Kara said she is “appreciative of the scholarship from the Soroptimist’s of La Grande and proud to be connected to an organization that does so much on behalf of women – thank you again.”

Jensen Congrats

Kristal Jensen is an SILG scholarship recipient, receiving a 2020-2021 High School Scholarship. Kristal is from La Grande and says her biggest support comes from her family, especially her “amazing parents Rick and Lisa Jensen.” Kristal also said that she would not have achieved some of her biggest accomplishments if not for the amazing teaching staff at La Grande High School, as well as her wonderful swim coach of many years,  Darrin Dutto.

This fall Kristal will be attending Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona,  studying to receive a bachelors degree in Athletic Training. Ultimately Kristal would like to continue her education after completing the undergraduate degree to become a Physical Therapist. When asked why this career, Kristal said, “I am passionate about this career path because I have firsthand experience of how these professionals can help change people’s lives as well as helping them through tough times and painful injuries.”

This summer Kristal will be working as a caregiver at a local adult foster home as well as working at the local pool when it finally reopens. In her free time she plans on hitting the gym with friends, going hiking, hanging out at the lakes and rivers and spending lots of time with family and friends before leaving to go to college.

What has Kristal learned in the last few months? “Amidst our current global pandemic and the many stay-at-home orders we’ve received, I’ve learned how much of a true extrovert I am. I cannot wait until it’s safe once again to go out and see whomever you want and to give those you care about big hugs! I’ve also learned that I can exercise in ways other them swimming and lifting. Since the pools and gyms have closed down, I have resorted to riding my bike as well as teaching myself how to skateboard!”

In closing, Kristal would like to say that she is “so honored to be chosen as a recipient of the Soroptimist International of La Grande scholarship.”


Carson Congrats

Alaina Carson is an SILG Scholarship Recipient, receiving an EOU Continuation Scholarship for 2020-2021. Alaina is from La Grande and would like to recognize her family
for always being so encouraging and raising her to strive to be a hard worker, and most
of all her fiance who supports her in all of her hopes and aspirations.

Alaina plans to complete her bachelor’s degree at Eastern Oregon University and major in Health and Human Performance with a Concentration in Community Health, then continue her education in graduate school to become a certified Dietician.

When asked why this career, Alaina said: “I participate in softball at EOU. From my sport and courses in school I have become very interested in health. Specifically, the two classes that motivated me the most to pursue this degree were Anatomy & Physiology with Dr.
Shaun Cain, and Nutrition with Dr. Kyle Pfaffenbach. I also volunteer at Heart N’ Home
Hospice and Palliative Care and I have seen my patients’ health deteriorate, and some
of that is due to a poor diet early in their adulthood. Therefore, I’m pursuing a degree in
Dietetics to educate individuals how to live a healthy lifestyle.”

This summer Alaina plans to obtain a part-time job to save up money for the
upcoming school year. Alaina is also getting married in September and is very excited to
start life with now-fiance/then-husband (Lewis Wright). Alaina also has a raft trip planned with family and friends down the Deschutes River.

When asked “What have you learned about yourself in recent months?” Alaina responded with, “I have found it to be a big transition adjusting to the lifestyle of a college athlete. Before the remainder of my season was cancelled I finally found a routine where I was able to get enough sleep, finish my studies, and work hard for a starting position on my sports team.  But now I am very excited to take on my Sophomore year as a college athlete.”

In closing, Alaina says she is very thankful for the La Grande Soroptimist organization for financially supporting a variety of people through their education. “Thank you for your time and dedication to the amazing community of Union County!”

SILG Scholarships Announced

The SILG Scholarship Committee is happy to announce the 20-21 scholarship recipients, a very worthy group. This year we are unable to host our annual luncheon, but instead hope to individually feature the recipients on our blog and FB page to recognize their achievements and wish them well! We’d also like to especially thank our generous community, without whose support of our events, specifically the past June Breakfast and Festival of Trees, make our scholarships possible. Read on and congrats to our recipients!

EOU Senior Scholarship – Karley Witten

EOU Continuing Scholarship – Kara Gooderham, Emily Andrews, Alaina Carson

High School Scholarships – Katie Perry, Josie Bornstedt, Kristal Jensen, Sophia Madsen