Barnesville B.E.S.T. Scholorship


Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow, otherwise referred to as BEST, originated in 1989 when the Barnesville Dollars for Scholars chapter was formed. Proposed changes from Scholarship America, its parent organization, prompted the re-organization of BEST in December 2013. 

Ever since the local scholarship organization was created, it recognizes that education is the key to coping and competing in an increasingly complex world. By offering scholarships, the community is making a strong statement about the importance of education beyond high school.

The local scholarship organization became a component fund of the Barnesville Area Community Fund in 1994. The Barnesville Area Community Fund is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. Therefore, all gifts to BEST are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.



Through Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow, donors have the opportunity to invest in the education of young people. This hometown support reflects pride in our students while showing a commitment to ongoing education.

Cash donations are the major source of funding for scholarships. These financial gifts may be made at any time, in any amount. All donations are appreciated and gratefully accepted. Funds also come from memorials or through fundraising events. BEST may be named as a beneficiary in wills, insurance policies and memorials. 

Contributions go into a general fund and contribute to the growth and operation of BEST. Contact Pam Aakre, 354-2198, if interested in sponsoring a named scholarship of $500 or more, or establishing an endowed scholarship.

In no circumstances are goods or services provided in exchange for gifts.

It is through the generosity from individuals, businesses and organizations that BEST is able to grow and award scholarships for BHS students to continue their education beyond high school.

Go to to make an online donation. Donations in the form of a check may be mailed to Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow, PO Box 461, Barnesville, MN 56514

Gifts of every size help generate scholarships. Thank you for considering a financial gift to Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow!


The Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow organization has the opportunity to make a strong, collective statement about the importance of education beyond high school. The generous donations from contributors to BEST provide encouragement, as well as financial support to help local students with rising tuition costs.


Any senior graduating from Barnesville High School, ISD #146, who will be a full-time college student later that fall is eligible to apply for a scholarship.  Post-secondary institutions include two-year, four-year, vocational and technical colleges.

An online, fillable application form may be completed on the district website, An application form is also available at the Barnesville High School counseling office. 

Completed applications are to be returned to the counseling office no later than May 1.

Click on the Application Form link to download a printable version of the application.


A volunteer committee comprised of Barnesville School District residents fulfills the tasks of BEST. Members include educators, professionals, business people and parents who are interested in expanding access to higher education for area students.

BEST recipients are chosen through an application process where committee members review and rate applicants on a point system. 

Prior to the evaluation, each application is assigned a number. This makes the selection process objective, nondiscriminatory and insures that students are given equal opportunity to compete for a scholarship that is based upon accomplishments and merit.

All aspects of a student’s life are taken into consideration, including work experience, school activities, community service, goals and aspirations, personal/family circumstances and scholastic performance. Applicants receive points in each of the above-mentioned categories, which in turn determine the scholarship amount.


Thanks to the donations from individuals, businesses and organizations, any Barnesville High School senior planning to further their education by attending a university, college, vocational, or trade school is eligible to apply for a Barnesville Education Scholarships for Tomorrow scholarship.

Some scholarships are specific, based on a student's intended major or interest.

Examples of named scholarships include, but are not limited to:

  • Knight of Columbus - $500
  • Barnesville Lions (community service) - $750
  • Barnesville Fire Department (in memory of Rick Holland) - $500
  • Perry Trowbridge Memorial (education) - $500
  • Peter and Hannah Thompson Memorial (business) - $1000
  • Bud & Dede Shulstad (agriculture) - $500
  • Clarence & Dolores Ebert (FFA involvement) - $500
  • Sam & Mary Syvertson (participation in high school athletics) - $1000 each one boy/one girl

BEST scholarship recipients will be announced at the Senior Awards program.  Award winners will receive a certificate noting the dollar amount and the name of the donor.

All scholarships, with the exception of the Sam & Mary Syvertson Scholarship, will be awarded once the student has completed one semester of higher education.  Honoring the family's request, funds for the Syvertson scholarship will be given following the first semester of the junior year in college with verification of a "C" average or better.

In December, recipients will be notified by letter to provide a copy of the first semester transcript and proof they are registered for the second semester.  Once the BEST treasurer has received these documents, a check is made out to the student and the college in the amount of the scholarship.  Checks are then mailed to the student.