Scholarships available for PBL students

Virginia Graham Scholarship
The Paxton-Buckley-Loda Education Foundation has announced the availability of the Virginia Graham Scholarship to graduating seniors at PBL High School.

The $500 scholarship is awarded to a senior who intends to pursue a degree in education or child development. An applicant must be ranked in the top 50 percent of his or her graduating class and must plan to enroll full time at an accredited two- or four-year college, university or trade/vocational school. 

The recipient is selected on the basis of three weighted criteria: academic achievement; participation and leadership in community, school, and the work place; and a written essay.  In addition, financial need will be considered.

Applications are available at and in the high school’s guidance office. They need to be postmarked no later than Feb. 15, 2013, and must be  mailed to:  PBL Education Foundation,  Virginia Graham Scholarship,  P.O. Box 192,  Paxton, IL  60957. The PBL Education Foundation Scholarship Committee will evaluate applications and select the winner. 

The Virginia Graham Scholarship was established in 2004 in memory of Mrs. Graham and her love of children. Mrs. Graham taught fourth grade at Clara Peterson Elementary School in Paxton for more than 20 years, then continued to work with children as a volunteer and substitute teacher following her retirement.

Ryan Coe Memorial Scholarship
The Ryan Coe Memorial Scholarship is being offered for the fourth year to seniors at PBL High School. 

Administered by the PBL Education Foundation, the scholarship is awarded to one graduating senior from PBL High school with a one-time $1,000 award.  Applicants must show evidence of at least a C grade-point average  and must plan to enroll full time at an accredited two- or four-year college, university or trade/vocational school. Applicants will be evaluated through a written essay and two references, and some weight will also be given to the choice of major.

Applications for 2013 are available at the high school’s guidance office and at  

Applications  must be postmarked by March 15 and be mailed directly to:  PBL Education Foundation,  Ryan Coe Memorial Scholarship,  P.O. Box 192,  Paxton, IL  60957. 

Applications will be evaluated and the recipient chosen by the scholarship committee of the PBL Education Foundation. 

For more information, email or call  217-395-2450.

Michele and Todd Coe  of Loda established the scholarship in honor of their son Ryan, who died  on Dec. 2, 2008, at the age of 15. Ryan  would have been in the PBL Class of 2011. His parents established  this scholarship in honor of his courage, his determination, his resourcefulness, and his enthusiasm for life.

F-M Bank Scholarship
Applications for the 2013 Farmers-Merchants National Bank Educational Scholarship are available in the guidance offices of Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley and Paxton-Buckley-Loda high schools and at the Farmers-Merchants National Bank branches in Paxton and Melvin. 

Scholarship information and application forms are also available at

The intent of the scholarship is to assist a graduating high school senior living within the PBL or GCMS school districts to continue his or her education beyond high school at a university, college or trade/vocational school. 

The PBL Education Foundation administers the application and selection process for the award of one $8,000 scholarship, which consists of up to four $2,000 annual award payments made to the institution of higher education where the student is enrolled. 

To be eligible, an applicant must have maintained a minimum of a 3.0 grade-point average based on a 4.0 system through the seventh semester of high school. 

Applicants are evaluated on three criteria: academic achievement, participation and leadership in school and community activities, and a written essay.

Applications must be postmarked no later than Feb. 15,  2013, and must be mailed directly to: PBL Education Foundation, Farmers-Merchants Scholarship,  P.O. Box 192,  Paxton, IL  60957. For more information concerning this scholarship, email

The scholarship was established in the 1999-2000 school year. Over the past 13 years, Farmers-Merchants National Bank has provided $104,000 in scholarship money.

Mediacom scholarship
Mediacom Communications will award 60 scholarships, each totaling $1,000, to graduating high school seniors. 

Eligible recipients must live in areas where Mediacom delivers broadband and cable services, which include nearly 350 communities throughout Illinois, including Paxton.

Recipients may use the financial awards to support educational expenses they incur in fall 2013 as they pursue higher education or vocational training from any accredited post-secondary institution.

High schools in Mediacom-served communities were sent application materials. Applications are due on or before Feb. 15. More information and the application can be found at


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