March 13, 2014
The Faculty Senate at Northeastern Junior College has selected two area students for its 2014 spring semester scholarship awards. Kayla Stebakken and Ivan Estupinan, both of Sterling, were recently honored with these $250 awards. For more than a decade, this faculty group on campus has been awarding scholarships to worthy students and in recent years, began awarding two scholarships per semester, for a total of four per year.
Kayla Stebakken is currently a sophomore at NJC. She plans on graduating after fall semester 2014. As a freshman, Kayla was very proud to have earned a 4.0 GPA. She has a sparkling personality and is always wearing a smile. She is working diligently to take on course work to provide her with a very broad based liberal arts education. Her psychology advisor, Scott Thompson, describes Kayla as a bright star who is always willing to help other students with advanced concepts. She plans to earn an Associate’s Degree in psychology at Northeastern, moving on to get more advanced degrees elsewhere.
Ivan Estupinan was born in Sterling, but spent much of his childhood living with his family in Mexico. The desire for a better education caused Ivan to leave his family and friends to return to Sterling and Northeastern. . Being virtually on his own, he spent most of his teenage years working two jobs to support his self while attending public school. Despite challenges learning English, he found a passion for science and won first place in the Northeast Colorado Regional Science Fair. He was also recognized at the state science fair as well as the Colorado-Wyoming Science Fair. He anticipates graduating from NJC in May of 2015 and plans to go on to the university with plans to eventually become a surgeon.
Each year four full-time students receive these scholarships. Students are nominated by the faculty each semester and then asked to write a two page essay indicating how they would benefit from being chosen for the financial awards. A committee made up of faculty members representing the various academic areas of campus reviews the essays and selects the winners.
The funds for the scholarship are raised through faculty association dues.
Jeff Schiel (center), a professor in the Liberal Arts Division on campus had the honor of presenting the scholarship awards on campus recently to recipients Kayla Stebakken (left) and Ivan Estupinan (right).