Spirit Button Academic Scholarship

Spirit Button is committed to supporting students through their education and as such is pleased to formally announce the launch of a new university scholarship essay contest.

The winner of the contest will receive a $2,000 scholarship towards tuition fees for the academic year commencing in September 2017.

Who Is Eligible

To be eligible, applicants must be a U.S. citizen, currently or about to be enrolled in an accredited U.S. 2- or 4-year university or college.

How To Enter

Any student who fits the eligibility requirements listed above can apply for the Spirit Button scholarship.

To enter, students must submit a 700 – 1,000 word essay on the topic “what inspires me the most in life and why?”

To submit, email your essay as an attachment in PDF or Word format, including your full name, school you are or will be attending and contact information to mail@spiritbutton.com.

Deadline For Submission

The essay submission deadline is 12:00 a.m. EST on August 1st 2017.

Selection Process and Notification

The Spirit Button team will review all essays received and one winner will be chosen for the 2017 academic scholarship. The winner will be announced on the Spirit Button website on August 15th 2017*. The winner will also be notified via email beforehand.

*Please note applications are now closed. Due to the extremely high volume of applications we have received, a winner will be announced by September 15th 2017 to allow time for the due consideration of all submissions.

Additional Details

The scholarship funds awarded are to be used for tuition and books only. Once awarded, a check will be written to the recipient’s school of choice and credited for academic costs. The scholarship is non-renewable and is only good for one academic year. Recipients are only eligible to receive the scholarship once during their lifetime.

Questions?

Any questions about the scholarship essay contest can be directed to mail@spiritbutton.com.

Privacy Statement

By providing us with the information required for the scholarship you consent to letting us use the information you provided solely for the purpose of offering a scholarship, should you be chosen to receive it.

Your information will not be used for any other purpose than the scholarship and reporting to the proper tax authorities.

Winner

Spirit Button is pleased to announce the winner of the 2017/2018 academic scholarship of $2,000 is Anemone Mars for her moving and inspirational essay on parenting, her support of indigenous communities and her pursuit of higher education in the field of sustainability.

Please see below a copy of her essay in full.

My first son came into this world three months before my 21st birthday. I’d spent many of my previous teen years focused on empowering Native American youth across the country to encourage the embrace of our cultural and spiritual uniqueness alongside our inherent predisposition to steward the earth and our respective communities. During that time in my life, my personal experiences were substantially garnished with multitudes of acknowledgements and respectful notations from intertribal communities. These relationships not only existed within my New England region, but also into the far southwest and many Indigenous communities in between. By the age of eighteen, my travels were extensive and reached an experience culmination when I served the 2nd semester of my senior year in high school, placed as an intern in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the headquarters of the Domestic Violence Prevention Special Initiatives Team of Indian Health Services West. From that point, and throughout my life, I have forged many resilient and positive relationships throughout “Indian Country” and held a variety of highly energized and fulfilling experiences; from delivering keynote addresses to audiences of thousands of Indigenous youth affiliated with UNITY Inc. (United National Indian Tribal Youth) to supervising wardrobe and costume design for Indigenous theatre companies and productions such as Spirit the Seventh Fire, and Dancing Earth. Nothing for me however, has been more fulfilling, challenging and rewarding than that of motherhood.

By the time my first son arrived, in the spring of 1996, even though I was young, I felt as though I was welcoming him into a world of enrichment, and freedom. I’ve spent the last 21 years now, continuing that parenting journey of love, life and devotion with he and his two younger brothers ages nine and two years. However, the struggle of independence and true freedom has certainly presented its’ share of challenges. I have reached a space in life where I feel I need to expand upon that enrichment through my own continued formal education, and to do so with the intent to foster the best opportunity for the future (and present) successes of my children.

 Over the years, the logistics of pursuing continued education for myself (akin to those of many others) have largely been impacted by, finances, time and simultaneous life management. A self-propelled educational program best suits my needs and lifestyle collectively as a self-employed mother and homemaker of the last 21 years. Often the tasks of home and family, in conjunction with needing the income to support the priors, have proven to be difficult to maneuver through the demands and needs of a conventional classroom. My present status as a consultant for the Narragansett Tribal Child & Family Services Department of the Narragansett Tribe of Rhode Island, has required the design and maintenance of federally funded grant based programs, for years beyond my immediate involvements. It is within these specific charges that I am currently responsible for the administrative submissions and upkeep of these agreements. Additionally, over the years I have authored and officiated an expanse of tribally based community projects and programmatic extensions which also required strong applications of literacy as well as organization. One of these projects (Journeys Through Knowledge) which spanned 2001-2005, funded by the Rhode Island Department of Health was implemented using traditional modalities alongside an infusion of The Performing Arts within Indian Country to deliver effective HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention initially to the Native American population residing within the state. The endeavor, which produced a short film, entertainment festival and extensive prevention and healing conferences, grew far beyond the interests and participations of those within Rhode Island and subsequently reached and incorporated involvement from intertribal Indigenous peoples. The musical component of this project, had a particularly poignant impact within the participating communities, as music has always remained a long-standing method of expression and communication amongst Native American people. The presentations in the context of delivering effective awareness messages pertinent to the HIV awareness topic, was widely impactful to its’ audience in a way that conventional oration, or dictation could not be.

My pursuit of undergraduate study, now in my life, is propagated by what can only be simply described as a concrete “knowing” that I must do more. It is with a plethora of engagements and experiences throughout my lifetime that have brought me to this platform and understanding of such cognoscente need. In sincere honesty, it is the necessity to effectuate a true environment of continued education and continued attainment of personal goals, to set the best examples for my sons, which is truly the root of my inspiration.

It is not easy in this world raising little Indigenous boys, to become global and spherical Indigenous men, who understand and acknowledge the breadth of not only their individual purpose and existence, but also that of the traditions and cultures from whence they originate. However, my sons continue to amaze, surprise and inspire me daily as it truly seems that despite the chaos of our present world, they inherently understand much more than the linear encounters on any given day, may offer credit towards. For me, this is true affirmation of the realities of spirit.

Although my entrance intent of study is within the Individualized Bachelor of Arts Program, I do have an extended interest in Sustainability. I am attracted to the prospect of tailoring an individualized program which could cumulative highlight areas of study which have been impactful and meaningful within my life, however I am also strongly aware and focused upon the needs within my own personal, economic and community enclaves, which should be more intent on the design and structure of sustainable independent existence. 

Copyright 2017 Anemone Mars (republished with author consent).

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