Purpose & Responsibilities of Scholarship Committee Volunteers

Scholarship committee volunteers work with Humboldt Area Foundation (HAF) staff to review, consider and make decisions for HAF’s scholarship funds.

Residents of Humboldt, Del Norte, Trinity and Curry counties have created these scholarship funds to honor their loved ones, to support higher education, and to help foster the improvement of students as they pursue their diverse ambitions. There are over 200 scholarship funds at Humboldt Area Foundation with a wide range of criteria. Each year, over hundreds of students apply to multiple scholarships, resulting in thousands of applications.

We ask each community volunteer to evaluate upwards of 45 applications each. All applications must be reviewed prior to attending an in-person committee meeting in mid-April. Committee members have at least two weeks to evaluate candidates at home and are expected to come to the committee meeting prepared to discuss their top candidates. Past committee members have let us know it takes approximately twelve hours to review all assigned scholarship applications.

Scholarship committees meet once a year and we ask participants to make a three-year commitment. We seek to partner with community members whose values align with our mission and who have a willingness to evaluate candidates based on the following:

• HAF promotes and encourages generosity, leadership and inclusion.
• HAF believes that race should not be an influencing factor in a person’s opportunities and life outcomes in our region. We recognize that there are institutional and societal barriers for students of color to attain a post-secondary degree, and take this into consideration when evaluating candidates.
• We evaluate each applicant individually, within the context of their environment. High schools provide different offerings, regions have different opportunities, and families have different resources.
• We are stewards of the legacy of our donors, selecting candidates who exemplify the qualities important to them.
• We believe that passion and perseverance toward a long-term goal is more of an indicator for success than an individual’s grade point average. Sustained effort despite obstacles help us to identify students who demonstrate the most promise and have the greatest need.
• We evaluate grade point average by ensuring that the student meets the minimum qualifications or exceeds the donor’s criteria for the scholarship that is being considered.

Questions about committee logistics may be directed to Elena Keltz, Program Coordinator, elenak@hafoundation.org or 707- 267-9920.

Questions about the policies of the scholarship program and responsibilities of the review committee may be directed to Craig Woods, Program Manager, craigw@hafoundation.org or 707- 267-9913.
Additionally, please note the following: 
- Scholarship applications will be made available through our online portal. Committee members will need to be comfortable with and have access to the internet.
- Once-a-year, three-hour scholarship committee meetings are typically held on weekdays during standard business hours.

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