The Mitchell Technical Institute Foundation held its twelfth annual Donor Recognition Event on Thursday, December 7. Five awards were presented to donors in different categories.
The Volunteerism & Service Award was presented to Bob Banks and Doug Kazmerzak who were instrumental in setting up the Ag Class of 1974 Scholarship. The scholarship is funded by 1974 graduates of the MTI Ag Technology program. The scholarship is in its fourth year and this year will consist of two $500 scholarships for second year ag students. This award is given to an individual who has given of their time and talent to the MTI Foundation.
The Individual Donors of the Year award was presented to Carrie Grimes and Connie Tiensvold for their establishment of the Kenneth B. Carlson endowment fund. Carlson, an area farmer, is memorialized by the fund which provides an annual scholarship to a student who comes from a family farm smaller than a thousand acres. This award is designated to be given to an individual or family who has made a single or multi-year commitment to an MTI Foundation initiative, a program or a scholarship.
The Corporate Donor of the Year award was given to Windwalker Transportation and NTA Limited. These two companies have provided no-cost leases of semi-tractors for the new Professional Truck Driving program. This award is given each year to a company which has made a single or multi-year commitment to an MTI Foundation initiative, a program or a scholarship.
The Donor Legacy award, which is given annually to a donor who has consistently supported the MTI Foundation, was presented to the South Dakota Rural Electric Association Line Superintendents Association. Since 1997, the Line Superintendents have awarded more than 100 scholarships totaling nearly $83,000 to students in the Power Line Construction & Maintenance program.
Finally, the Industry of the Year award was presented to the Agriculture industry, specifically the donors to MTI’s Plant A Seed fundraising campaign. In what would become the first deal of its kind, Mitchell Technical Institute, the MTI Foundation and the MTI Farm Enterprise Fund combined forces, aided by the donations of nearly a dozen donors, to fund the purchase of a new John Deere 12 row, NT 1775 planter. This award recognizes an industry which, as a whole, has come together to support an MTI program with donations of cash, equipment, supplies, training or provided internship or employment opportunities to MTI graduates.)
In other news, those attending were informed that nearly $200,000 in scholarships were awarded in the past year and the Foundation’s endowment balances now exceed $3 million. Total scholarships and program support increased from more than $251,000 last year to nearly $445,000 this year.