Educator Marla Prusa is the newest recipient of our prestigious Teacher of the Year award.
Prusa is a teacher at Howells-Dodge Consolidated Schools. She has been in the education field for more than 30 years. She is a member of countless organizations including Nebraska State Business Association and the Family and Consumer Science Teachers of Nebraska Association.
This oft awarded teacher has been recognized as the Nebraska Home Economics Teacher of the Year an impressive 5 times. She has also accepted the FCCLA Master Advisor Award and the National Home Baking Association Educator Award.
At school, she serves as the Senior Year sponsor, the yearbook advisor, and she runs the clock at the school’s sporting events. She is part of the schools crisis team and works on the AdvanceEd Team. Outside of school, she is a member of the American Legion , the 4-H Club, and the Council of Catholic Women.
Pursa was honored at an all-school assembly. We have honored excellent educators for more than a decade as part of its “Commitment to Our Schools” program, which provides thousands of dollars to support schools in its communities each year.
Meet another one of our amazing grant winners. St. Boniface has received $4,750 for a new iPad mini lab to help better customize student learning.
The grant will help the school to purchase 20 iPad minis, cases and a mobile iPad mini charger. The school will use the iPads to develop students’ artistic skills including editing video and audio, crafting digital stories, and altering images. The iPads will also assist with reading comprehension, conducting research, and listening to audio books. If you are looking for some great apps for your own tablet, here are 15 iPad apps that can help with student creativity.
This was one of four Great Plains Communications’ grants provided as part of its “Commitment to Our Schools” program. Don’t forget to start thinking about your school’s great idea for next year!
We’re pleased to announce that, once again, a student from one of our communities has won a national scholarship!
Deshler Public High School student Jenscena Hansen has received a $1,000 scholarship from The Foundation for Rural Education and Development (FRED), a national charitable foundation aimed at promoting academic achievement in rural areas. The award is given based on merit and a commitment to rural life.
A recently graduated senior, Hansen was an exemplary student who also devoted her time to extra-curricular and volunteer events. Hansen was a member of the Deshler high school band and jazz band. She assisted in food drives, recycling programs, town beautification initiatives and youth sports. Hansen also served as an usher at her church. She intends to attend Clarkson College in the fall.
The FRED scholarship requires a sponsorship from a telecommunications company to be eligible. Hansen was sponsored by local provider Great Plains Communications. Students sponsored by Great Plains Communications have consistently been awarded FRED scholarships despite the high-level of competition.
We’re once again spotlighting our annual grant winners and today we’re featuring Chadron Elementary School who won $5,000 for a brand new iPad lab!
The grant will allow the school to purchase six iPads, a Mac Book Pro, and various learning applications. Multiple studies have shown that using tablets in the classroom significantly benefits students’ academic achievement. The iPads will allow students to interact with material and individual apps can help students target unique learning needs.
The grant was awarded as part of our “Commitment to Our Schools” program. The program has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars to schools for a wide range of projects including aquaponics labs, student-run businesses, and theater renovations. We are very proud to add Chadron Elementary to the list!
There is still time for you or your school to earn thousands of dollars in aid from Great Plains Communications. Our Grants and Scholarship Program is taking applications until March 1st so you have ten days left.
Past grant winners have started up new businesses, launched award-winning language programs, and even developed an aquaponics lab. Whether for arts, language, science, teacher development, or school improvements, you can apply for a grant. We give up to $20,000 in grants every year with as much as $5,000 available for each project. You can find out more by looking at previous projects here.
We also provide thousands of dollars in scholarships for a wide range of programs including online studies, technical schools and four year degrees. Previous winners have pursued degrees in marketing, telecommunications, pre-law, and much more. However you want to further your education, we can help provide support.
Of course we can only help if you apply! Click here and download our application to get started, today!
Does your school have an amazing idea but lacks the funds to make it happen? Then you need to apply for a Great Plains Communications grant! Each year, we give up to $20,000 in grants to schools throughout the communities that we serve. The grant can be used for nearly any project as long as it improves learning.
Past awards have varied from arts projects, to hard science initiatives, to language programs. Our grants have funded two student-run businesses that have executed state and nationwide projects! We have helped a school to bring their theater back to its former glory and have funded an aquaponics lab. Several schools have used the funds to increase technology by building iPad labs and adding Smartboards in the classroom.
There are only about six more weeks until the program stops taking applications (March 1st), so get started now! You can download the application and find out more on our website. To view other projects, click here.
School is back in session and for many teens, it’s the final semester of high school! While that final semester of high school can be exciting, it can also be a little nerve wracking as the cost of college taunts. Fortunately, there is help for high school seniors in our communities!
Due to increased awareness and opportunity, more rural students than ever are attending higher education institutions. It’s a trend that we couldn’t be more proud of and one that we actively support. For example, we help provide reduced cost phone and Internet services to a range of educational institutions. This has allowed students to take college-level courses online and get better prepared for college curriculum. Of course, we also provide direct financial support for students.
Every year, Great Plains Communications provides up to $10,0000 in scholarships to students across the state. These scholarships range from support for technical schools all the way to traditional four-year universities. Each scholarship provides $1,000 in support for a student.
A sponsoring parent or legal guardian must be a Great Plains Communications customers for a student to be eligible. The applicant must have a desire to return to their hometown or another Great Plains Communications community after they graduate. We are big believers in strengthening small town Nebraska! For further regulations and the scholarship application can be found on our scholarships page.
Veronica Bair of Culbertson has been awarded a $2,500 nationwide scholarship from the Foundation for Rural Education and Development (FRED).
Veronica is a student at McCook Senior High School. Great Plains Communications served as Veronica’s official sponsor and recommended her for this scholarship. She is one of 9 students to win the $2,500 scholarship.
FRED is a charitable foundation that awards scholarships to students from rural backgrounds based on merit and a demonstrated commitment to rural life. Students must be interested in pursuing a career in the telecommunications industry or show an interest in returning to rural America.
Bair will attend the University of Nebraska at Lincoln in the fall to pursue a degree in civil engineering. She currently has 3 siblings attending UNL.
“As long as there is a need for safer bridges, better highways, or improved sewer systems, there will be a need for civil engineers. My aim is to become a civil engineer and use my aptitude for math to solve complex, real life problems,” said Bair in her application essay.
Great Plains Communications is a strong supporter of educational efforts in the communities it serves. The company provides approximately $15,000 worth of educational scholarships to students annually. The company’s “Commitment to Our Schools” grant program provides $20,000 to schools to provide additional funding for special projects and initiatives. These efforts help schools and students achieve their dreams and serves to fight rural brain drain.
It’s time to spotlight our third 2013 grant winner. Crofton Jr./Sr. High School won a $5,000 grant from Great Plains Communications to help purchase new equipment for the school’s iPad lab.
The funds will be used to purchase eight iPads, heavy-duty cases to protect the devices, a MacBook Air and programs for the devices. The funds will also help cover more than 100 new applications for use in the classroom.
Crofton is another example of a school that is integrating mobile technologies into their curriculum. Great Plains Communications has helped dozens of schools create wireless networks that allow students to use tablets, laptops, and video-learning as part of their studies.
We’re highlighting another one of our wonderful grant winning schools today!
German Settlement School received a nearly $5,000 grant from Great Plains Communications. The school will use the money to purchase new equipment for the school’s iPad lab.
The new equipment includes ten iPads minis, two iPads compatible projector devices, training for the school’s staff, and programs for the devices. The specialized training will help teachers to determine how to best use the iPads in their curriculum. A special voucher for the Apple App Store will allow the school to purchase a myriad of new educational applications.
The use of iPads is growing in Nebraska and across the nation. According to Apple, there are more than one million iPads in US schools. Over the last few years, we have helped nearly half a dozen schools create or expand iPad labs. The projectors will allow the school to connect with other organizations and schools through video learning.
As always, when we feature a grant winner, we want to remind you that our grant program is an annual one. If your school has a wonderful idea for next year, make sure to grab an application!