CRMS student, Willa Schendler, awarded a Boettcher Scholarship

by Aimee Yllanes

Out of a pool of more than 1,600 applicants, Colorado Rocky Mountain School senior Willa Schendler has been awarded a 2022 Boettcher Scholarship.

The four-year scholarship is only awarded to 50 students per year. Willa is the only recipient in the Roaring Fork Valley this year and the only student from CRMS to have ever won this prestigious scholarship. It comes with $20,000 annually for tuition, fees, and other expenses. Additionally, Colorado College will cover the rest of her tuition for the four years. The scholarship recipients are chosen based on demonstrations of service, leadership, character, and academic performance. Beyond financial support, the program provides Scholars with unique enrichment opportunities designed to enhance their learning journeys, launch careers, and cultivate leadership potential. Scholars also become part of a vast and diverse network of Boettcher Alumni that dates back 65 years. The ethos that unites Scholars across generations is the enthusiasm to give back to the communities where they attend college, work, and live.

Her advisors, Mark Clark and A.O Forbes said “Willa is one of the best students that has ever attended Colorado Rocky Mountain School.  In addition to being a superb student in class, she is committed to all of the values that CRMS holds dear. She’s an involved member of the community, a steward of the environment, and a contributing force to both service crews and sports. We cannot think of a more deserving recipient of the Boettcher Scholarship.”

Willa has accepted the scholarship and committed to Colorado College this fall. While she is interested in studying Political Science, she will enter with an undecided major.

In addition, each 2022 Boettcher Scholarship finalist was asked to identify one teacher who impacted their lives and made significant contributions to their growth and education. Willa chose Tracy Wilson as her teacher nominee. Willa said, “I am often baffled by how many community items Tracy Wilson is gracefully and deeply committed to. She has two amazing kids. She runs the CRMS climbing program which has brought me so much joy. She has been my climbing coach, summer volunteer mentor, publishing buddy, source of wisdom, and catalyst for my involvement in the community for the past four years. As if she needed to do more, she was on the board of the Parks and Recreation Commission. She teaches a social-issues-themed night class (after a full CRMS day) at Roaring Fork High School. All this, on top of crafting a thoughtful, always relevant World Geography class, which remains one of my favorite classes of all time. I’m not sure how she does it, but I think it has something to do with the eternally-present thermos of black coffee. Throughout my time at CRMS, I have been so grateful to have Tracy in my life: as a teacher, a coach, a climbing partner, an editor, and a friend.  Anyone looking for a model on how to live an ethical, fulfilling, and meaningful life should look no farther than Tracy. I am so honored to have the opportunity to give her this recognition. “

Tracy Wilson will receive a $500 grant to use toward an education program, professional development, or project to benefit students at CRMS.

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Academics, College Counseling, Community, News, Student

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