HARRY AND ELEANOR D. NELSON VACAVILLE ENDOWMENT FUND

Established: Feb 28, 2008

2018 NELSON SCHOLARSHIP CYCLE IS OPEN!

SCF is currently accepting 2018 scholarship applications from graduating seniors attending Vacaville H.S., Will C. Wood H.S., and Buckingham Magnet Charter H.S. for ten awards to be made in late April, 2018. There are seven Nelson Scholarships available at $14,000 each (payable over four years), two Briggs Scholarships at $2,500 each (one year only), and one Powell Scholarship at $5,000 (V.H.S. student, one year only). Students interested in applying may download and complete the appropriate application form, and submit their package with the required documents on or before April 4, 2018.  The eligibility and application instructions for each scholarship award are provided below. 
Students may apply for all three scholarships if they are eligible, but must submit the required form for each. Only one scholarship per student will be awarded.

2018 STUDENT ENROLLEMNT VERIFICATION FORMS

All new and renewal scholarship recipients must complete and return a Student Enrollment Verification Form for payment processing. Download the appropriate form by clicking on the link below. Students receiving a Nelson 4-year (renewable) scholarship are required to submit a verification form each year. Type directly on the form and return it to SCF electronically as an email attachment. Recipients may also complete and print the form to send in via regular mail. Scholarship payments are sent directly to the school, for deposit to the student's account. 

2017 NELSON FUND SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS

We extend our congratulations to ten highly deserving graduating seniors from three Vacaville high schools, all of whom have been awarded a generous scholarship from the Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Vacaville Endowment Fund, a component fund of the Solano Community Foundation.  A record number of forty-five applications were received this year. Twenty-four students applied for one of the seven Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Scholarships available, eighteen students applied for one of the two Auldin Briggs Achievement Scholarships, and three students applied for the one Grace B. Powell Vacaville High School Scholarship.

The students in each scholarship pool were extremely qualified and the selection process was highly competitive. Best wishes to all of the applicants for every success in their future endeavors!

Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Scholarship -- $14,000 ea. ($3,500 per yr for 4 yrs)
High School Student Name Major or Career University
Will C. Wood Dylan Nute Mathematics/Teacher CSU Polytecnic 
Will C. Wood Ian Kitamura Civil Engineering UC Irvine
Will C. Wood Mercedes Hall Biology, Environmental Studies UC Berkeley
Buckingham Charter Magnet Mikayla Canales Biology, for Teaching CSU Sacramento
Vacaville Cassidy Aberson Biochemistry/Molecular Biology Pepperdine
Will C. Wood Willow Rigney Health Science CSU Chico
Will C. Wood Hailey Milsaps US History CSU Sacramento
       
Auldin Briggs Achievement Scholarship -- $2,500 ea. (one pmt) 
High School Student Name Major or Career University
Vacaville  Kristoffer Hernandez Nursing or Neuroscience CSU Riverside
Buckingham Charter Magnet Rita Zughbaba Radiology Napa Valley Community College
       
Grace B. Powell V.H.S. Scholarship -- $5,000 (one pmt) 
High School Student Name Major or Career University
Vacaville  Cassiel Nortier-Tilly Aquatic Biology UC Santa Barbara

FUND HISTORY & PURPOSE

Originally named “Vacaville Community Foundation” by Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson in 1967, this fund focused on benefitting Vacaville residents. Technically not a “community foundation,” but a private foundation, the Nelsons promoted education through the granting of scholarships to seniors in Vacaville high schools for college and postgraduate study. The secondary purpose was, and still is to promote public recreation, preservation of the environment, and preservation of historical records and relics.

In 2008, this private foundation dissolved and moved the assets to a new endowed scholarship fund at the Solano Community Foundation. SCF is now the successor and administrator of The Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Vacaville Endowment Fund and their scholarship program. 

Historically, most of the funds distributed have been as scholarship awards. Initially, grants made were one-time, non-renewable awards of a few hundred dollars to a handful of students.

Now, decades later, SCF awards ten scholarships annually to deserving high school seniors: seven 4-year "Nelson" scholarships (totaling $14,000 each), one $5,000 "Powell" scholarship, and two "Briggs" scholarships ($2,500 each). 

Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson - A BRIEF HISTORY

Harry Nelson graduated from the University of California at Davis and was an agriculturalist with landholdings in the Vacaville area. 

His wife, Eleanor Dexter Nelson, a native of Lodi, graduated from the University of California at Berkeley. She began teaching in Vacaville in 1920 and retired from teaching Spanish and English at Vacaville High School in 1951. During her "retirement," Mrs. Nelson devoted her energies to community service, including inauguration of a city recreational program for youth, organization of Fiesta Days, and the establishment of the Vacaville Museum.

2016 SCHOLARSHIPS AWARDED

The 2016 cycle brought with it a change in the number of scholarships awarded and the amount of each award.  The Nelson scholarship award amount was decreased from $5,000 to $3,500 per year, but the number of awards was increased from 5 scholarships to 7. The Briggs scholarship amount was decreased from $5,000 to $2,500, but now there are two awarded each year.

HARRY AND ELEANOR D. NELSON Scholarships 
HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT NAME COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY AMOUNT
Vacaville Brenden Barling UC Davis $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Vacaville Shelby M. Blackman Long Beach State University $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Will C. Wood Damon Lewis San Diego State University $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Will C. Wood Mackenzie Magaoay Long Beach State University $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Will C. Wood Imari Pugh Sacramento State University $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Vacaville Austin Roe Cal Poly San Luis Obispo $3,500 – 4-year renewable
Will C. Wood Shaina Whaley Solano Community College $3,500 – 4-year renewable
AULDIN BRIGGS Scholarships
Will C. Wood Saahil Patel UC Los Angeles $2,500 - one-time
Vacaville Miranda Psaila University of Nevada, Reno $2,500 - one-time
GRACE B. POWELL Scholarship
Vacaville Jarrod Jentgen UC Davis $5,000 - one-time

2015 NELSON FUND SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS

The 2015 "Nelson Fund" scholarship recipient list is shown below. A total of 39 applications were received. Twenty-one students applied for a Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Scholarship, eleven students applied for the Auldin Briggs Achievement Scholarship, and seven students applied for the Grace B. Powell Scholarship, but not all were from Vacaville High School seniors.

Award Amount High School Student Name College or University
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood Ryan Cunning Cal Polytechnic State University
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood Joshua Salazar UC Santa Barbara
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood Jiashu Zhou UC Los Angeles
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood Amanda Barthelmes William Jessup University
Nelson $20,000 Vacaville High Emily Poulsen-Jones CSU Monterey Bay
Powell $5,000 Vacaville High Jessica Papadopoulos UC Los Angeles
Briggs $5,000 Vacaville High Zachary Hancock Brigham Young University

2014 NELSON SCHOLARSHIP RESULTS

The table below lists all 2014 Nelson, Powell, and Briggs Scholarship recipients, made possible from the Harry and Eleanor D. Nelson Vacaville Endowment Fund. There were a total of seven scholarships awarded. A total of 38 scholarship applications were received. Eighteen students applied for a Nelson Scholarship, eight students applied for the Powell Scholarship, and twelve students applied for the Auldin Briggs Achievement Scholarship, a new award for 2014.

Award Amount High School Student Name College or University
Nelson $20,000 Vacaville H.S. Breanna Sewell Claremont McKenna College
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood H.S. Kevin Kasir UC, Los Angeles
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood H.S. Sarah McElwain CSU, Northridge
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood H.S. Claire Quinata UC, Berkeley
Nelson $20,000 Will C. Wood H.S. Lindsay Nute CSU, Sonoma
Powell $5,000 Vacaville H.S. Sarah Case UC, Los Angeles
Briggs $5,000 Buckingham Charter Magnet H.S. Julia Gordillo UC, Davis

2013 NELSON FUND SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS

Scholarship Name High School Name of  Recipient Amount Awarded College or University
Nelson Buckingham Charter Magnet H.S. Ryan Catanzaro $20,000 total
(4 yrs at $5,000 ea.)
CSU, Sonoma
Nelson Vacaville H.S. Nicolas Lacey $20,000 total
(4 yrs at $5,000 ea.)
UC, Davis
Nelson Vacaville H.S. Jeevanpreet Sidhu $20,000 total
(4 yrs at $5,000 ea.)
UC, Berkeley
Nelson Vacaville H.S. John Stern $20,000 total
(4 yrs at $5,000 ea.)
Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
Powell Vacaville H.S. Alexia Jentgen $5,000 1 yr only  Brigham Young University
Powell Vacaville H.S. Julia Stern $5,000 1 yr only  Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

2012 NELSON FUND SCHOLARSHIP AWARDs

Pictured left to right are three of the five 2012 recipients: Laura Lomeli, Elena Valeriote, and Travis Tapay, with Stephanie Wolf (CEO). 

Elena Valeriote - $20,000 - VHS

Travis Tapay - $5,000 - Grace Powell - VHS

Jordynn Hawkins - $20,000 - WCWHS

John Pavia - $20,000 - WCWHS

Laura Lomeli - $20,000 - VHS

"My Freshman year was filled with memorable, wonderful experiences.  Thank you so much for your generous scholarship and what it has helped me to achieve."  Elena Valeriote

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