Increasing Public Awareness of Fire Sprinklers
The American Fire Sprinkler Association (AFSA) is proud to offer financial assistance and public awareness of sprinklers through its online scholarship program, AFSAscholarship.org. A total of $25,000 is awarded through this public awareness campaign to 10 lucky graduating high school seniors and five college students as they pursue their higher education goals. Since its creation in 1996, the AFSA Scholarship Contest has sought to promote the scholarship outside of the fire sprinkler industry in the hope of reaching students who may otherwise never have recognized the importance of automatic fire protection. Now entering its 22nd year, the AFSA scholarship continues to grow, attracting over 185,000 unique visitors to its website during the contest dates.
“AFSA and its Public Education & Awareness Committee created this program to increase the public’s knowledge that fire sprinklers save lives and property,” comments AFSA Region 5 Director Jeff Phifer, chairman of the committee. “It’s very rewarding to be reaching such a large number of people, all the while helping students fulfill their career aspirations.”
Seniors & Scholarships For the high school senior contest, applicants must be a current high school senior planning to attend an accredited U.S. college, university or trade school in the fall after high school graduation. Applicants are required to read a passage about fire sprinklers – which describes their history, how they operate to save lives and property, and the types of careers that are available in the industry – and take a eight-question reading comprehension test. For each question answered correctly, the student receives one entry into a drawing for one of ten $2,000 scholarships. A total of eight entries per applicant into the drawing are possible.
The winners were randomly selected from 70,742 students who entered to receive a one-time $2,000 AFSA scholarship payable to their respective college, university or trade school. The 10 national winners for 2017 are: Miljana Djurovic, Des Plaines, Illinois; Zachary Duncan, Okemah, Oklahoma; Karolina Madro, Roselle, Illinois; Kendall McCulty, Los Angeles, California; Emily Miller, Bluffton, Indiana; Angela Murillo, Coachella, California; Robert Nelson, Winslow, Arizona; Anna Newton, Oxford, North Carolina; Cameron Smith, Redlands, California; and Sarah Sutton, Sandwich, Massachusetts.
Winner Zachary Duncan is planning to major in physics at Hesston College in Hesston, Kansas. “I learned about the scholarship through an online search and I didn’t know anything about fire sprinklers before entering this contest,” comments Duncan. “I [now] understand how important it is to have fire sprinklers installed. The impact fire sprinklers can have on the safety of people and the preservation of property is enormous.”
Duncan is grateful for the scholarship as it will help with college costs. “The books for my major are very expensive, with just one of them costing over $400,” he notes. “So this scholarship will help tremendously to pay for my books.”
A Second Chance For students who entered the contest but didn’t win, there is a second chance – as well as a chance for those already enrolled in college – to win more scholarship funds. Those seeking to pursue a college undergraduate or graduate degree or trade school education – including returning military, parents returning to the workforce, etc. – are encouraged to enter. The contest offers five $1,000 scholarships.
AFSA’s Second Chance contest is open now at afsascholarship.org/secondchance. Applicants for the contest must reside in the United States, hold a high school diploma, GED or equivalent, and be enrolled at or accepted to a college/university or certified trade school.
The winners of this scholarship will be randomly selected from students who entered to receive a one-time AFSA scholarship payable to their respective college, university or trade school.
Second chance students follow the same rules and procedure as the high school senior students for entering. For each question answered correctly, the student receives one entry into a drawing for one of the scholarships. A total of eight entries per applicant into the drawing are possible. The Second Chance contest closes at 12:00 noon Central time on August 30, 2017.
AFSA scholarships are open to U.S. citizens or legal residents and are not based on financial need. For details or to apply for either scholarship, visit AFSAscholarship.org.