Withnell Music Scholarship Awarded to Two South Students
Zari Crier ‘16 and Kaitlyn Clawson ‘16 were among the seven winners of the Withnell scholarship, given to students who have a planned musical education or performance major once they reach college. It is named after Harold J. Withnell, a music lover and patriarch of the family who has funded more than $100,000 worth of scholarships in his name. “Mr. Holland’s Opus,” a movie released in 1995, served as the family’s inspiration, who debuted the program in 1996.
The film takes place in 1965 and details the story of 30-year old Glenn Holland, a professional musician and composer, who is exhausted by his life, and in an attempt to spend more time with his wife, Iris, and compose a piece of orchestral music, he accepts a teaching position at a high school.
The students were awarded their scholarships on Monday, May 23, presented by Dick Withnell, philanthropist and self-described “used-car salesman.” Among those who joined him were his wife, Gale, son, David, and daughter, Gina Withnell Oschsner. Salem music educator Karl Raschkes also presented, along with Chemeketa Community College President Julie Huckenstein, Maureen Casey from the Catholic Community Services and project director of the Fostering Hope Initiative, and the executive director of Family Building Blocks, Patrice Altenhofen. In turn, each of the presenters shared biographical sketches of each student who won, along with portions of their application essays and recommendations.
A more complete description and list of winners can be found on Statesman Journal.
Meanwhile, for the 20th anniversary of the program, Mary Lou Boderman, director of music and theater arts for the Salem-Keizer schools, presented Dick and Gayle Withnell with a plaque to commemorate the event.