AFE Awards Scholarships

August 3, 2012 - 11:17

The American Floral Endowment recently awarded 17 scholarships totaling more than $26,000. AFE scholarships are administered annually, and applications are due in May.

The American Floral Endowment (AFE), recently awarded 17 scholarships totaling more than $26,000.

“It is always rewarding to see how many amazing young people there are who love the floriculture industry, and we are very pleased to be able to help them continue along this career path,” said AFE's Scholarship Chairperson PJ Ellison, of Ellison's Greenhouses in Brenham, Texas.

AFE scholarships are administered annually, and applications are due by May 1st each year. To learn more about AFE scholarships, visit the Scholarships and Internships page on the AFE website, at

The Ball Horticultural Company Scholarship was awarded to Heidi Wollaeger, Michigan State University. Wollaeger, a second-year Master’s student, hopes to work in the floriculture industry as a grower or manager at a large greenhouse operation where she can test new products, conduct research or grow large-scale floriculture crops. The Ball Horticultural Company Scholarship is intended for junior or senior students pursuing careers in commercial floriculture. 

Sarah Leach, North Carolina State University received the Harold Bettinger Memorial Scholarship & Fran Johnson Scholarship.  Leach hopes to share her love of horticulture with the public by working at a botanical garden. The Bettinger Scholarship is intended for horticulture students, sophomore through graduate levels, who have a major or minor in business and/or marketing with the intent to apply their education to a horticulture-related career business. The Fran Johnson Scholarship goes to students re-entering school after a 3-5 year absence, who have an interest in bedding and/or floral crops.

The BioWorks IPM/Sustainable Practices Scholarship was presented to Stacey Haack, University of California, Davis Haack plans to work in an applied research setting within the floriculture industry. The BioWorks IPM/Sustainable Practices Scholarship is intended for students pursuing a career in floriculture. 

The National Greenhouse Manufacturing Association (NGMA) Scholarship was presented to Amanda Wilkins, North Carolina State University. Wilkins hopes to use her experience to work towards a career in sustainable development at a public garden. The NGMA Scholarship targets students majoring in horticulture and bioengineering or the equivalent, and are at least a junior at an accredited four-year college maintaining a 3.0 GPA.

Ryanna Zoellner, University of Georgia, was the recipient of the James Bridenbaugh Memorial Scholarship. Zoellner hopes to serve in a management position at a horticulture or landscape company, or start her own wholesale production or retail florist shop. The Bridenbaugh Memorial Scholarship is for sophomore, junior, or senior students pursuing a career in floral design and marketing of fresh flowers and plants. 

The John Carew Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Jared Barnes, North Carolina State University. Barnes, a PhD candidate, hopes to be a college professor of horticulture to share his knowledge and passion and educate others about plants. The Carew Scholarship is open to graduate students in horticulture, with an interest in greenhouse crops. 

Tim Staudahar, University of Minnesota, Crookston, was the recipient of the Earl Dedman Memorial Scholarship
Staudahar is a junior and plans to fulfill his career goal of becoming a manager at a nursery or wholesale grower operation. The Earl Dedman Scholarship is awarded to students who are interested in becoming greenhouse growers, are from the Northwestern United States, and have sophomore, junior, or senior status. 

The Long Island Flower Growers Association Scholarship was presented to Justin Kondrat, Cornell University. Kondrat is a junior and  hopes to work in a public garden setting where he can educate the public on various horticulture topics. The LIFGA scholarship is intended for students in the Long Island/New York area studying ornamental horticulture at a community college or a four-year institution.

Brooke Gasteyer, University of Wisconsin – River Falls received the Markham-Colgrave International Scholarship. A senior, Gasteyer hopes to pursue her dream of working in a greenhouse growing a variety of bedding plants, perennials and ornamentals. The Ed Markham International Scholarship is intended to operate in cooperation with the David Colegrave Foundation in London, England. Each year there will be an exchange of students between the U.S. and Europe, alternating between the two countries. 

The Mike and Flo Novovesky Scholarship was awarded to Andrew Koeser, University of Illinois.  Koeser, a father of two, and a senior, hopes to become a professor of horticulture at a university and focus on issues of sustainable horticulture production. The Novovesky Scholarship fund aims to help young married students who are working to put themselves through college and have a GPA of 2.5 or higher. 

Christopher Curry, Purdue University received the James K. Rathmell Jr. Memorial Scholarship. Curry hopes to continue working in research and education and will be pursuing this goal through collaboration at the University of Queensland, Australia. The Rathmell Scholarship is awarded to junior or senior level undergraduates or graduate students who have a specific plan for horticulture work/study outside of the United States. 

The Seed Companies Scholarship was presented to Kyle Vandenlangenberg, North Carolina State University.  Vandenlangenberg is a PhD candidate at North Carolina State Universityand  hopes to work in the seed industry, with a focus on small horticultural crops or novel ornamentals. The Seed Companies Scholarship requires students to have a career goal within the seed industry and be junior or senior level undergraduates or graduate students. 

The John L. Tomasovic Sr. Scholarship was given to  Elizabeth Brooks, University of Georgia. Brooks hopes to become a grower or manager for a business that markets flower and plants for garden use. The Tomasovic Scholarship offers special consideration for sophomore, junior, or senior undergraduate students with financial need and a grade point average between 3.0 and 3.5. 

The recipient of the Ed Tuinier Memorial Scholarship were Kathleen Van Driessche, Michigan State University, and Kyle Tuiner, Michigan State University
Van Driessche hopes to grow annuals and seasonal plants such as poinsettias. Tuinier hopes to expand upon his existing skills working in a greenhouse. Tuinier hopes to expand upon his existing skills working in a greenhouse.The Tuinier Memorial Scholarship is awarded to sophomore, junior, or senior undergraduate students enrolled in the floriculture program at Michigan State University.

The Jacob & Rita Van Namen Marketing Scholarship was awarded to Andrew Scruggs, North Carolina State University.  Scruggs hopes to start his own horticulture production business and own his own greenhouse facility to produce vegetable plants, bedding flowers, and hanging baskets. The Jacob & Rita Van Namen Marketing Scholarship requires students have a career interest in agribusiness marketing and distribution of floral products and be of sophomore, junior, or senior standing.  

Joshua Henry, The Ohio State University received the Bud Ohlman Memorial Scholarship & Vocational (Bettinger, Holden & Perry) Scholarship. Henry hopes to own and operate his own greenhouse business where he plans to grow a variety of plants for wholesale and retail. The Bud Ohlman Scholarship requires students have a career goal of becoming a bedding plant grower for an established business and have junior or senior status.  The Vocational (Bettinger, Holden & Perry) Scholarship requires students to be in a 1 or 2 year program with the intent to become a grower or greenhouse manager.  

Leave A Comment

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.