KEARNEY — Three students from Broken Bow, Centura and West Point-Beemer high schools will attend the University of Nebraska at Kearney as Omaha World-Herald/Kearney Hub scholars.
This year’s recipients of the scholarship are Weston Walz, Grace McDonald and Mitchell Lierman.
The OWH/Hub scholarship is one of the premier academic awards at UNK. It provides room and board, tuition and fees, and books for the duration of the recipients’ collegiate careers at UNK.
John Falconer, director of the UNK honors program, said there were 150 applicants for the OWH/Hub scholarship, which is a 14 percent increase compared to last year and continues a four-year growth in applicants. Forty students were invited to campus for interviews.
The recipients are:
Weston Walz, son of Troy and Adrienne Walz, will graduate from Broken Bow High School with a 4.0 GPA and ranked first in his class. He scored a 32 on his ACT and will be a member of Kearney Health Opportunities Program for pre-medicine and plans to major in biology. He has been involved with music his entire life, to which he largely attributes his growth as a person. While attending high school, Walz was involved in One-Act, speech, student council, band, choir, art club, National Honor Society, Tri-M, Spanish club and HOSA-Future Health Professionals. Weston received the NSAA Academic All-State Award, was selected to the UNK Honor Choir, won the Broken Bown High School Faculty Choice Award and on was on his school’s “A Honor Roll.” Watson volunteers his time at Custer County Salvation Army to assist those in need.
Grace McDonald, daughter of Brent and Amy McDonald, will graduate from Centura High School with a 4.0 GPA and ranked first in her class. She scored a 32 on her ACT and plans to major in journalism at UNK. McDonald finds her passion in public speaking and aims to inspire and influence others. During her high school career, she was involved with Future Business Leaders of America, choir, speech, One-Act, National Honor Society, volleyball, student council and Lou-Platte Conference Art. In each of these extracurricular activities, McDonald received numerous awards. In 2018-19, she received the U.S. Bank NSAA Believers and Achievers Award and President’s Education Award. Not only is she a high achieving student, but she also volunteers her time around her community. McDonald has been a Totus Tuus Church Camp assistant, American Legion Memorial speaker and youth volleyball coach. She helped organize a March of Dimes Walk fundraiser for her community and serves as a Youth Voice columnist for the Grand Island Independent newspaper.
Mitchell Lierman, son of Lonnie and Nancy Lierman, will graduate from West Point-Beemer High School with a 4.0 GPA. He scored a 35 on his ACT and will major in journalism at UNK. Lierman enjoys finding humor in life and wants to spread that humor to other people as well. During his high school career, he participated in speech, Quiz Bowl, One-Act, band, student council, drone imaging squad, Future Problem Solvers, FBLA and multiple essay contests. In addition to his active involvement, he has received awards for his hard work and dedication in multiple areas. He won the Optimist Club Essay contest and Voice of Democracy contest, and he has received runner-up various times. Lierman has donated his time to Relay for Life, Bancroft Speech and Drama Camp, the Alumni Banquet and Cuming County Economic Banquet. He wishes to help others find their voice and add his own voice to discussions, whether to contribute knowledge or to challenge his fellow peers’ thinking so new ideas can be developed or old ideas may be revised and discussed.