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TCA Newsroom

24 Students Receive Scholarships From the Truckload Carriers Association
8/8/2012

Alexandria, Virginia:

The Truckload Carriers Association is pleased to announce it has selected 24 college scholarship recipients for the 2012-2013 academic year. The TCA Scholarship Fund has been providing money for higher education to students associated with the truckload industry since 1973. This year’s scholarships range in size from $2,725 to $6,250 and were awarded without regard to sex, race, color, national origin, or religion.

“We are pleased to report a record number of qualified applicants for the scholarship program this year. Due to the ongoing generosity of TCA members, we have once again increased the amount of money going to scholarships,” said Tom McLeod, chairman of the TCA Scholarship Fund and the president of McLeod Software Corporation of Birmingham, Alabama.

As per TCA’s requirements, each scholarship recipient is a college student in good standing who attends an accredited four-year college or university, and is either the child, grandchild, or spouse of an employee, or an employee of a TCA member company, or the child, grandchild, or spouse of an independent contractor or an independent contractor affiliated with a TCA member. In addition, each scholarship recipient has shown financial need and scholastic achievement, maintained full-time student status, and has demonstrated that he or she is an individual of high character and integrity. 

The following students will be receiving the scholarships:

Photo:  Katherine HoekstraKatherine Hoekstra
Hoekstra Transportation, LLC
St. Anne, Illinois

National Association of Independent Truckers Scholarship Winner ($6,250)
Hoekstra is a returning scholarship winner who will be a senior at North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. She is pursuing a double major in business management and entrepreneurship, along with a minor in psychology. Hoekstra says she is proud to be a part of a family that is deeply rooted in the trucking industry (her father inherited the company from her grandfather 30 years ago with just three trucks… it now boasts a fleet of over 100). She plans to join her dad in the business after graduation and credits the trucking industry for teaching her the value of motivation and hard work.

Photo:  Patrick LawhonPatrick Lawhon
Scudder Law Firm, P.C.
Kansas City, Missouri

Kai Norris Scholarship Winner ($3,250)
Lawhon is about to begin his freshman year as a history major at Stanford University in Stanford, California. His love for history began back in the sixth grade, when he began participating in an annual National History Day competition that requires participants to research and present topics that relate to that year’s theme. When he was a sophomore in high school, the theme was “Innovation in History: Impact and Change.” While the other kids were choosing obvious topics like electricity or the personal computer, Lawhon chose the history of containerization and intermodalization. He went on to win the regional, state and national competitions with this subject. Lawhon says his father’s work in the trucking industry spurred his interest in showing others how innovations in the transportation of goods and products have changed the world dramatically.

Photo:  Matthew ReedMatthew Reed
TravelCenters of America
Wadsworth, Ohio

Thomas Welby Scholarship Winner ($3,250)
A rising junior at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, Reed is studying accounting and computer information systems. For the summer of 2013, he hopes to receive an internship in a transportation-related industry. Reed has been exposed to the trucking industry all his life through his father’s employment with Travel Centers of America. He has seen firsthand how people in the trucking industry treat each other like extended family and how they support each other through tough times.

Photo:  Deborah BessentDeborah Bessent
deBoer Transportation, Inc.
Saint Joseph, Michigan

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
This fall, Bessent will be a junior at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan, where she studies accounting. She has been involved with the trucking industry for many years. Her husband, Jeffrey, started out as a truck driver in 2001 and has since held a variety of positions with deBoer Transportation, most recently as director of safety. Although Bessent is currently a stay-at-home mom, she used to drive with her husband and has also worked as a compliance clerk, a personnel clerk and a compliance manager. Someday, she would like to either join a company within the transportation industry as an accountant or launch her own business working with owner operators on their accounting and tax needs.

Photo:  Amanda BravoAmanda Bravo
Knight Transportation, Inc.
Litchfield Park, Arizona

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Bravo began working for Knight Transportation earlier this year after nine years of managing a restaurant. She says that leaving her previous career was a little scary, but she feels joining the trucking industry has been one of the best decisions she has ever made. Because of her new job, she has made many new friends and can spend more quality time with her son. Eventually, she would like to move up to a management position. In the meantime, she attends the University of Phoenix in Arizona, where she is a junior majoring in business management with a concentration in accounting.

Photo:  Graham HigginsGraham Higgins
Prime Inc.
Ozark, Missouri

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Higgins, an incoming freshman at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, is beginning his collegiate studies as an international relations major. In the future, he hopes to work with a corporation as a liaison to businesses in foreign countries or to become an ambassador working on behalf of the United States. Higgins has worked five summers in trucking and has come to appreciate how hard his father works and the sacrifices he has made over the years to provide for his family.

Photo:  Hughston HodgesHughston Hodges
Hodges Trucking Company
Hamilton, Georgia

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
According to Hodges, the trucking industry has provided not only income for his family, but many cherished memories as well. He recalls taking “big truck” trips as a young boy, spending time with his parents and brother during evenings at the office, and bonding over road trips to retrieve trucks and inspect trailers. Today, he is employed in the safety department of Hodges Trucking Co., where he organizes and audits driver log books. Hodges is a sophomore at the University of Georgia in Athens, where he studies history. Eventually, he would like to teach high school and enroll in a graduate studies program.

Photo:  Jennifer HoekstraJennifer Hoekstra
Hoekstra Transportation, LLC
Peoria, Illinois

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Hoekstra is a junior at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, where she majors in business management. To satisfy her curiosity about the inner workings of the company that her grandfather and father built, she spent last summer working fulltime for Hoekstra Transportation and learning about the everyday processes that make the business prosper. She has attended several TCA conventions and knows quite a bit about the trucking industry. After graduation, she hopes to travel and work in sales for another company in order to experience a different type of industry. Then she plans to bring her new skills back to her hometown to add another generation of richness to the family business.

Photo:  Hannah HollowayHannah Holloway
Epes Transport System, Inc.
Greensboro, North Carolina

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Holloway attends the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she is a junior majoring in special education. After graduation, she plans to teach and take graduate courses in occupational therapy. Trucking has played a huge role in Holloway’s family life by giving her struggling mother a way to overcome a weak financial situation. She is grateful to the industry for providing opportunities for her mother to advance to the management position that she holds today. Holloway lives on her own, pays her own bills and maintains a 4.0 grade point average. As an adult, she wants to make her mother proud and graduate with the highest possible education and honors.

Photo:  Jessika JeppsonJessika Jeppson
C.R. England, Inc.
West Jordan, Utah

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Unlike most of the other TCA scholarship recipients, Jeppson had no previous connection to trucking before taking a job with C.R. England/England Logistics. Now that she is immersed in the industry, she has grown to appreciate what happens behind the scenes of moving North America’s freight. She has a better appreciation for how much the average person depends on drivers and trucking employees just to get the basic necessities of life. A junior studying sociology at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, she has already spoken with senior leadership at C.R. England to plan how she can use her education in some capacity where she is already employed. After she graduates with a new set of skills, she plans to bring even more back to the industry that she has come to respect and admire.

Photo:  John KabaseJohn Kabase
McLeod Software Corporation
Birmingham, Alabama

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
This fall, Kabase will be a freshman at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. He plans to pursue a double major in business and dentistry. Kabase’s connection to the trucking industry stems from his father, who washed trucks to pay for his own education 29 years ago and has worked within the industry ever since. Kabase is grateful for TCA’s scholarship money because it allows him to give back to his parents, who are putting three children through college at the same time for the next two years.

Photo:  Laura KonkolLaura Konkol
Cummins Inc.
Madison, Wisconsin

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Konkol, a returning scholarship winner, will be a senior at the University of Wisconsin in Madison this fall. She is currently majoring in sociology with a certificate in criminal justice. After graduation, she would like to attend graduate school and then embark on a career in the court system helping the underprivileged. Konkol says the trucking industry is the only thing that has remained stable in her family’s life over the past few years. It kept them afloat when her mother lost her job, when her two brothers had to move back home because of the failing economy, and when finances were needed to pay for the past three years of her college education. In addition, she says, “The people in the industry are what have given my family strength and courage when it seems that there is none left to be had. My family knows that it can trust and depend on the trucking industry.”

Photo:  Michelle LehnusMichelle Lehnus
Hoekstra Transportation, LLC
Bourbonnais, Illinois

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
When Lehnus was a young child, she would ask her father for details about his job. He explained that truck drivers from Hoekstra Transportation deliver food and equipment all over the Midwest. He impressed upon her the importance of being on time — not just in trucking, but in everything she might do in her life. This fall, Lehnus will take her father’s values with her to the University of Illinois in Champaign, where she will be a freshman. She plans to study accounting and eventually become a CPA.

Photo:  Juliette LunaJuliette Luna
Sky Transportation Services, Inc.
El Paso, Texas

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Luna is in her senior year at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. She is majoring in political science. After graduation, she plans to earn a master’s degree and then specialize in supply chain management. Luna’s connection to the trucking industry is her father, who had always been fascinated by trucks as a boy and finally bought one as an adult. In the beginning, he struggled to support the family, but later the financial situation improved. He eventually opened his own truck line. Luna remembers him always filling the family in on the many issues affecting the industry and his business. “To this day, trucking is still a major part of my life, and I hope to pass this passion on to my children and generations to come,” she said.

Photo:  Nathaniel McCormickNathaniel McCormick
Fremont Contract Carriers, Inc.
Hooper, Nebraska

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
McCormick is going to be a freshman at the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana. He plans to study engineering. He says that his father’s career in the trucking industry has shown him the importance of tracking economic changes in order to make wise investments and decisions for the future. Through his dad’s trucking connections, he has also learned many lessons about respect and how to handle relationships between people.

Photo:  Kolby McGeeKolby McGee
Big G Express, Inc.
Shelbyville, Tennessee

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
McGee is a sophomore at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro. She is majoring in accounting, but after graduation would like to work as a pharmacy technician. She also dreams about opening an event planning business and bridal shop. Her mother has worked in the trucking industry for over 20 years. Because of her mother’s employment and eagerness to share her knowledge, McGee and her siblings have a better appreciation for what truck drivers experience, for how hard they work, and for the many facets of our community and country that they support.

Photo:  Kenna NelsonKenna Nelson
Warren Transport, Inc.
Cedar Falls, Iowa

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Nelson’s grandfather has worked for Warren Transport for 58 years. Now at age 73, he is confined to a wheelchair, but he remains so dedicated to his job that he still goes into the office to work a few hours every day. He has taught Nelson the importance of hard work, dedication and respect for all. He also taught her to never give up, no matter what the circumstances. Nelson plans to use the skills she has learned from her grandfather and apply them to work in her own life. She is a sophomore studying elementary education at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls.

Photo:  Kaylynn OlmsteadKaylynn Olmstead
Roehl Transport Inc.
Auburndale, Florida

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
As an incoming freshman, Olmstead will study advertising design this fall at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida. She became connected to the trucking industry three years ago, when her mother married a professional truck driver. Although her new stepfather’s job was demanding, it provided a better financial situation for Olmstead and her mother, who had previously been struggling on their own. Now, every time she sees her stepfather’s “enormous red truck” in her driveway, she says she thinks of it “as a symbol for my future, for the company of family, for the persistence of love, and for God’s grace in my life.”

Photo:  Alyssa RamseyAlyssa Ramsey
Jet Express, Inc.
New Lebanon, Ohio
TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Ramsey is entering her sophomore year at Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Ohio. She hopes to go on to obtain a bachelor’s degree in software development from Wright State University, also in Dayton, Ohio. Both of her parents have worked in trucking; in fact, they owned a fleet of trucks until Ramsey’s father became disabled. The 22-year old looks to trucking as not just a job, but a career. “I want to be a part of what moves America,” she says.

Photo:  Julie SchneierJulie Schneier
Tri-National Inc.
Florissant, Missouri

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Schneier is an aspiring high school math teacher who plans to major in secondary education and mathematics. This fall, she will be a freshman at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. Her father began working as an accountant for a family-owned trucking company shortly after Schneier was born. He switched to Tri-National Logistics in 2006. The career move allowed him to be closer to home and spend more time with the family. Schneier has fond memories of visiting her father at his office, looking at pictures of tractor-trailers, and imagining where the trucks were coming and going based on a large wall map that hung there. She is very proud to say that her father works for the trucking industry!

Photo:  Joanna StawarzJoanna Stawarz
Landstar System, Inc.
Mount Prospect, Illinois

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Stawarz, a returning scholarship winner, is a rising senior at Saint Xavier University in Chicago, Illinois. She is majoring in nursing, hoping to eventually become a pediatric nurse practitioner. Her stepfather has been driving across country for as long as she can remember. His extended absences have forced Stawarz and her mother and brother to become very independent. “Although my stepdad’s job has made separation a part of our lives,” she says,” it has also taught us many valuable lessons and has made us into the independent, supporting, loving family we are today.”

Photo:  Brieanne TingleyBrieanne Tingley
CRST Malone, Inc.
Madison, Wisconsin

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
A returning TCA scholarship winner, Brieanne Tingley is a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is double majoring in viola performance and ecology. She hopes to work with environmental organizations in the area of conservation research as well as teach private music lessons. She notes that her father’s job in the trucking industry has supported the family financially and has allowed her and her sister to attend college.

Photo:  Lyndra TingleyLyndra Tingley
CRST Malone, Inc.
East Lansing, Michigan

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Another returning TCA scholarship winner, Lyndra Tingley is a senior studying music education at Michigan State University. She is kept very busy teaching 40 students private violin/viola lessons, conducting a youth orchestra, working at a Montessori school twice a week, teaching two preschool violin classes, and serving as the president of a student chapter of ASTA, the American String Teachers Association. Like her sister, Brieanne, Lyndra notes that her connection to trucking is her father, who “works late into the night and on weekends … to make sure that he is able to provide for us and help the people he works with.”

Photo:  Justin WilliamsJustin Williams
Dysart's Transportation, Inc.
Dixmont, Maine

TCA Scholarship Winner ($2,725)
Williams is a junior at the University of Maine in Orono. His link to the trucking industry stems from his mother, who works for Dysart’s. Besides the obvious benefits of financial stability, her job has benefited Williams because of the many connections she has made within the industry. In fact, some of her colleagues recognized Williams’ strengths and skills and convinced him to give up automotive studies at a local community college to pursue an undergraduate degree in business management. Immediately after the switch, Williams went from being a “C” student to a high honors student for two semesters in a row. He says without the valuable advice he received from his mother’s connections, he would not be where he is today. After graduation, he would like to pursue a career in the field of retail management.

Applications for the 2013-14 scholarships will be due in June 2013. For more details about TCA’s Scholarship Fund, please visit www.truckload.org/scholarships.


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