The Kearney Area Community Foundation started a pilot project this spring with Kaleidoscope, a technology company that helps connect students with scholarships, and makes selecting students easier for committees.

Laurel McKellips, the foundation’s program manager, took the lead on the project since part of her responsibilities at the Kearney Area Community Foundation includes managing more than 107 scholarships awarded annually.

“We have learned that students are now applying for scholarships on their smartphones and Apple watches,” McKellips said. “We are excited to streamline the scholarship process into one single platform on Kaleidoscope. This will make the experience easier and quicker for students, anyone writing a recommendation for a student, as well as the scholarship selection committee.”

Kaleidoscope helps scholarship donors reach students who need assistance to attend college. The platform helps students find and apply for scholarships offered by companies, donors and other organizations.

n Did you know: $146,390 in scholarships were awarded in 2019 through the Kearney Area Community Foundation?

n Did you know: $200-$20,000 was the range of scholarships awarded in 2019?

In the next steps, the board will review the outcomes of this spring’s pilot project and will decide if we are ready to invest in rolling out the scholarship technology to the majority, if not all, of our other scholarships.

Donations made to the Kearney Area Community Foundation through The Edison Society campaign will allow the Kearney Area Community Foundation to expand the technology allowing more students access to scholarships and increasing the ease for those applying, reviewing and writing references. Watch for more information coming later this year.

Judi Sickler, Kearney