These are the stories of just a few out of more than 2,400 deserving students who have been given the opportunity to reach out and pull their dreams a little closer. Please help us continue making dreams possible for others in Holmes County.

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Clay Sinnett.  Clay Sinnett graduated from West Holmes High School in 2006 and pursued higher education studies in Business/Finance from The University of Mount Union.  He received a scholarship through the HCEF to help fund his undergraduate college tuition and fees.  He began working with The Commercial and Savings bank in college and in 2010, he was able to receive a Bachelor's degree in his field of study. He now is employed as an AVP, Commercial Loan Officer.  "My current job and career would not be possible without the proper education I received from Mount Union.  Receiving a scholarship through the HCEF provided me funds to help lessen the burden of increasing costs of my college education."
Rachel Hawkins.  "I love the community of Holmes County.  Community members are often very generous and caring, and will go out of their way to help others.  It's encouraging," comments Hiram College graduate, Rachel Hawkins.  The community is part of the reason Rachel returned to Holmes County where she now works as a Personal Risk Advisor for Hummel Group.  Her college education was sustainable in part to scholarship funds awarded by the HCEF.  "I cannot stress enough the importance of my education- not only in my job, but also in my everyday tasks... The HCEF helped provide me the funds to make college possible."
Brady Shriver .  Ashland University Alum Brady Shriver earned his bachelor's degree in Business Administration.  "I want my kids to grow and experience the things I did growing up.  It's important that they spend as much time with grandparents and family like I was able to."  Brady graduated from West Holmes High School in 2009 and shortly thereafter was awarded a scholarship through the HCEF in order to pursue his undergraduate studies. "[The HCEF] allowed me to purchase expensive books I needed to succeed without the stress of paying for them out-of-pocket.  My educational experience has given me knowledge in how to interact with all kinds of people which is useful in my position.  I want to make sure the individuals I meet, leave happy."

Jane Houin. This former West Holmes High School student applied and was awarded a scholarship through the HCEF in order to help decrease her college expenses. "The HCEF really helped to alleviate some of the financial burden of attending college, allowing me to focus on my education."  She later graduated from Purdue University in 1997 where she pursued Ag Communication. She returned to Holmes County where she now works as the Administrative Assistant for the Holmes Soil & Water Conservation District office.  "My degree is in Ag Communication, which over the course of my career has evolved into a passion for educating students about the science of agriculture.  That is a large part of what drew me to the Holmes Soil & Water Conservation District.  I love the share the story of agriculture."



Krystle Winemiller. "My studies focused on sales and marketing, and I use the skills I obtained through college coursework almost daily at my current position. Having a degree falls hand in hand with experience, at least in my field of work. Leading up to my college graduation I worked in the marketing field, and upon the completion of my degree, it allowed for my resume to feature the proper credentials that helped me obatin my current position with improveit 360," states Marketing Coordinator Krystle (Long) Winemiller.  Krystle attended the University of Phoenix-Online earning her Associates of Arts degree and later attended DeVry University-Online with a Bachelor's degree focused in Sales and Marketing.  The HCEF was able to award Krystle with a scholarship to help assist with college tuition & fees. "The HCEF allowed me to further my education and professional goals by investing in my dreams very early on.  The support I felt from my hometown for the big dreams I had, was just what I needed when I started college."


Jonathan Beam.  Jonathan graduated from Waynedale High School and later pursued Criminal Justice/Sociology at Ashland University after receiving a scholarship from the HCEF. Jonathan explains that the training he received in college was invaluable to his current position as the Dog Warden for Holmes County.  "My educational experience got me this job.  Had I not have had a criminal justice degree, I may not have reached the qualifications [necessary to fulfill the position]. My education has made me a better person both through the education I received and through the experiences I had while attending college."  Jonathan states, "I am forever grateful for the support of the HCEF."


Brooke Hershberger."I enjoy working in Holmes County because of the small town feel.  With a small town atmosphere, people seem to be more personable and friendly.  I also like that Holmes County has alot of hometown businesses.  It makes this area very unique," states former HCEF scholarship recipient Brooke Hershberger.  Brooke graduated from Bluffton University in 2011 with her bachelor's degree and currently works for the Holmes County Department of Job & Family Services.  Although she has pursued a career that is not directly correlated with her intended major, she states "I feel that I have gained skills in knowing how to work with people and how to de-escalate situations."  The HCEF has played a major part in lowering her college expenses.  "The HCEF was one of the contributing donors that helped keep my college expenses lower and for that I am so grateful.  As of May 2015, I have paid off all of my college loans, just a little under four years!"

Amelia Gazso.  West Holmes High School graduate, Amelia (Coblentz) Gazso was awarded a scholarship through the Holmes County Education Foundation to help her pursue her bachelor's degree with a focus in Fashion Design at Kent State University.  Now, she is the proud owner of "Gals with Guns" a company that specializes in fashion for licensed concealed carry holders.  The Holmes County area not only inspired her but offered many resources to her business! "I enjoyed access to quality leathers for my holsters from Weaver Leather! I had easy access to [the] woods and wildlife in the country." 

Molly Mohr.  Molly graduated from the University of Mount Union with her bachelor's degree with a concentration in Business Administration/Finance in 1998.  She currently is the Assistant Vice President and Banking Center Manager for The Commercial & Savings Bank in Walnut Creek and Winesburg, OH.  Molly comments that her education has opened up many doors for her career.  "While in college, my advisor provided an internship opportunity with a Wall Street firm (now known as Morgan Stanley).  Upon graduation, they offered me a job.  I continued selling investments for 15 years and then decided to return to Holmes County to pursue retail banking."

Rachel Mast.   "I've lived in Holmes County much of my life and want to be where my family and community is.  I'm a member of the Amish-Mennonite community, and there seems to be a need here for copyeditors and writers who understand the culture," states former HCEF scholarship recipient Rachel Mast. With that need in mind, Rachel pursued her bachelor's degree in English from The University of Akron where she graduated in December 2015.  She currently works as a Public Relations specialist at Christian Aid Ministries and as a freelance copyeditor in her home-based business.  "Being able to depend on a scholarship from the Holmes County Education Foundation semester after semester has been a 'life-saver'.  Without it, I would be acquiring thousands of dollars more school debt.  I cannot say 'thank you' enough."

Luke Brewer.   After receiving a scholarship through the Holmes County Education Foundation, Luke obtained a bachelor's degree from the Ohio State University majoring in political science.  He later earned a Juris Doctor from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in 2013.  Currently, Luke is employed as an Associate Attorney for Miller, Mast, Mason & Bowling, Ltd. in Millersburg, OH.  Luke says,"My degree focused on strongly communicating with others.  Honing my written and oral skills is something I try to do every day and it's absolutely necessary to be able to communicate effectively as an attorney.  In that respect, I believe my education has served me well."

Erin Randolph.   "Growing up in Holmes County was wonderful and gave me a great sense of security... Not everyone is fortunate to come from such a caring community".  Now working as the District Manager/ Contractor Relations contact for FedEx Ground, Erin states, "I would not be who I am today without the support of my family and community.  I learned early on that with hard work and dedication you can reach your goals."  Erin received a scholarship from the Holmes County Education Foundation to pursue Communications at The Ohio State University where she graduated with her bachelor's degree in 2001.

Maureen Arnold desperately wanted to attend college but was denied any financial assistance. She received a scholarship from the Holmes County Education Foundation and studied therapeutic massage, earning straight A's, loving school, and living life to the fullest. "For you to give me the chance to try and make something of myself at the 'advanced' age..." Maureen says, "absolutely stuns and overwhelms me!"



Tom Arnold. "I enjoy being reunited with the people that I have grown up with--people that have made a difference in my life." These words come from a man who places importance in Holmes County. Tom Arnold, employed by the Killbuck Savings Bank, serves his community as a Loan Officer. Tom helps local customers achieve short and long-term goals with their finances. This 1994 graduate from West Holmes High School majored in Business Management and minored in Economics from Muskingum College in New Concord, Ohio. "I benefited from Muskingum by coming into contact with many people from different backgrounds," Arnold stated. "This helped me adapt to different social backgrounds and come into contact with some very interesting individuals." He graduated from Muskingum in 1999.


Pam Basinger attended Bowling Green State University, graduating in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. Now working for The Commercial & Savings Bank as an assistant vice president and financial officer, she says, "I feel Bowling Green is an excellent college which prepared me very well for a business career, and provided a well-rounded education." "We are very fortunate in this area to have the Holmes County Education Foundation's assistance with higher education."



Ashley Brillhart went to Ashland University and graduated in 2007 with a bachelor's in Commercial Recreation with a concentration in Business Administration. Ashley currently works for the City of Wooster as the Recreation Coordinator. "Not only did the scholarships that I received through the Holmes County Education Foundation help me out financially, but they also allowed me to give back to my community while attending college," she says. "I was able to use my time outside of school, to volunteer for programs and internships that helped me become who I am today. Now as a professional, I have the opportunity to devote my time to serve others through coaching, youth events, sports leagues, and service clubs. I owe a huge thank you to the HCEF and its donors for their investment in my future and support in my achievements."



Danielle DiVincenzo attended Ashland University, graduating in 2009 with a focus in Marketing. She now serves as a Manager of Trade Analytics & Insights with Nestlé®. She says of the Foundation, "The Holmes County Education (HCEF) Foundation is not only an institution that supports higher learning...but the Foundation is an institution of hope. The HCEF allowed me as a senior in high school to feel confident that I could attend whatever university I wanted to. I was in a position in which many would have shied away from attending a private school due to financial reasons, but the staff at the Foundation showed me that education was within my reach...As a result, I was able to receive a top-notch education, and have great success in finding a fulfilling and successful career after college!




Andrew Glasgow. After spending 22 years in the oil and gas business, Andrew Glasgow decided to go back to school. In 2000, he chose Stark State College of Technology. Glasgow majored in computer science and engineering technology, online software design, successfully completing the program, and was previously employed by Valkyrie Internet Service in Millersburg in the areas of Technical Support and System Administration. Andrew states, "It has been an educational experience at Valkyrie, being able to apply what I have learned in so many different areas... I am very grateful to the Holmes County Education Foundation for the scholarship assistance received while attending school. HCEF was a large part in helping me achieve my goals." Andrew's wife Toni plans to attend college in 2004, and with four children, one of which who has also received a scholarship through HCEF, it is inspiring to see that Andrew has begun a tradition of education in his family.




Matthew Hamsher graduated from Hiland High School in 1991 and attended Eastern Mennonite University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and Secondary Education in 1995. He then enrolled at Eastern Mennonite Seminary. He has served as Assistant Pastor at Walnut Creek Mennonite Church from 1999-2003, relocated to Pasadena, California, and has since returned to the area. Hamsher was appointed in 2008 as regional pastor for Ohio Conference of the Mennonite Church. "I am thankful for the scholarship I received and the support given to me by the Holmes County Education Foundation. I am hopeful that my work as a pastor, especially as I relate to youth and young adults, will help me to give back to the community that has given me so much support over the years." Matt and his wife, Kristina, live in Sugarcreek with their two daughters, Carrie and Andrea. He says, "We have enjoyed returning to my home community and have found it a great place for us to start raising our family."


Chad Heller. Chad graduated from The Ohio State University in 2002 with B.A. in Psychology. He currently works at Hummel Group in Berlin as a Producer and Account Executive. "Having the financial assistance from the HCEF not only helped with the bills when it came time to pay for tuition," Chad says, "but it also helped me stay accountable for myself. Knowing tha tI had some financial backing from home other than my parents motivated me to stay in school and get my degree. Receiving a scholarship was also a huge boost to my confidence when I was faced with doubts about going to- and staying in- college. Having a college degree has helped me obtain a job that I love in an area that I love."




Crystal Horn. "I would like to thank the Holmes County Education Foundation for providing myself and others with scholarships. The support is greatly appreciated," says past recipient Crystal Horn. "By pursuing a higher education," she states, "I am able to do something I enjoy and be rewarded for it. It's a wonderful feeling to be respected as a healthcare provider and to know that I am helping others." It is no wonder that Horn is now telling her patients the importance of education. Currently a Registered Dental Hygienist for Dr. Brad Welsh's Office, Crystal educates patients on the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth. A 1997 Hiland graduate and 2000 graduate of Stark State College of Technology, Crystal concentrates on patient cleanings, x-rays, and placing dental sealants. Horn's family and friends keep her in Holmes County, but professional support also recognized the worth of her abilities. "I was fortunate that Dr. Welsh provided me the opportunity to be a part of his dental team and give back to the community. Working [there] has proved to be exciting and rewarding."


Teresa Hoxworth. Past HCEF scholarship recipient Teresa Hoxworth says, "My educational experience allowed me to be exposed to a diverse range of classes, opportunities and people while I pursued the career I have always dreamed of." Hoxworth is a 1993 Hiland High School graduate, and received her Bachelor's degree in 1997 and DVM in 2003 from The Ohio State University. She is currently employed by East Holmes Veterinary Clinic in Berlin.


Jason Hummel. "This assistance from the Holmes County Education Foundation helped me to take advantage of a college education," says Jason Hummel. "The education taught me how to learn and opened the door to job responsibilities that would have otherwise been degree in business management is very much a part of my job as a commercial lender. As a lender, I have to understand financial statements as well as understand the business, which was a big part of my training in business management."



Jarret Mathie attended to The University of Akron, and graduated in 2012. He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and now serves as a mechanical and manufacturing engineer with Red Head Brass. "With help from the Holmes County Education Foundation," I was able to pusue and obtain a higher education," Mathie says. "Why was this important to me, you ask? Well, it enabled me to become a productive member of society and, most importantly, stay a Holmes County resident! I have recently purchased my first home and witnessed the birth of a son; without the accelerated education [the HCEF] helped me achieve, that would not have been possible. I am looking forward to the day I proudly support our local community as [the HCEF has] done for so many. THANK YOU!"



Emily Menuez graduated from Hiland High School in 1996. She attended Malone College and was formerly employed by the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce. When asked about her view of education and employment, she commented, "I was privileged to receive the Holmes County Education Foundation scholarship to assist in financing my college education. With the economic environment as it is today and the intense competition for jobs, there is no doubt that a college education gives an applicant a definite competitive edge in the job market. I am grateful that I was able to receive my college degree and will always be appreciative of the Holmes County Education Foundation's role in making that achievement possible."



Zachary Morris. Was hired as a Principal at Rea & Associates This magna cum laude graduate from Ohio Wesleyan University states that his educational experiences "allowed me to realize that one can benefit from diversity [and] accept change. I believe I am a more rounded person because of it, and college made me look forward to coming back [to Holmes County] where I grew up...College is a large investment. I couldn't have made it without the aid of organizations such as the Holmes County Education Foundation and the wonderful people that donate to the scholarship funds."


Adrienne Nowels. "Like many students," she says, "I was paying for the cost of college myself. By awarding me scholarship funds, the Holmes County Education Foundation enabled me to focus on the reason I was attending college - to obtain an education." .Adrienne graduated in 2002 from The Ohio State University with a B.S. in business administration, and concentrated in risk management, insurance and finance. "By attending a large institution such as OSU, I was exposed to many career options…I chose a degree that was versatile-- I can live in the city or country and still be able to find a job in my area of study."



Amy Patterson. "Attending Ohio University allowed me to experience living and working with others, learn how to manage my time and finances, and expand and broaden my knowledge," Amy Patterson states. "My educational experience," she says, "allowed me to be very confident in my position at the Commercial & Savings Bank. I use both my [major and minor] on a daily basis...I am genuinely appreciative that the HCEF offers scholarships to Holmes County residents to help defray the cost of higher education...I feel very fortunate that a scholarship in memory of a long-time Holmes County educator was established, and that I was chosen to receive a 4-year renewable scholarship in her name."



Renee Raber, a 2000 graduate from The University of Akron, has easily been able to implement a social work degree into her position as Deputy Clerk at the Holmes County Juvenile Court. Raber's job duties include processing child support documents, performing various clerical duties, and encountering many social activities each day. "Getting a social degree," Renee says, "has helped me understand and appreciate the differences between cultures and people in general. I can apply social work principles to everyday life, even though I am not always working in the social work field." Raber is very appreciative of the financial help she received prior to her studies at The University of Akron. "HCEF's financial assistance helped me focus on my studies," she said, "rather than worrying about the financial aspect of school."


Tracy Reiheld. "The Holmes County Education Foundation (HCEF) has given me the greatest opportunity of my life. If it weren't for them, I wouldn't be where I am today. Because of the HCEF, I was able to go to college and obtain a degree." This West Holmes High School grad spent four years at Kent State University focusing her studies on Finance and Business Management. "I am more able to understand the business world [because of my education]," she states. "My experience has broadened my horizons, being that I grew up in small Holmes County."


Karl Schlabach was raised on a dairy farm, graduated in 1992 from Hiland High School, and went on to graduate from Mt. Vernon Nazarene College with a BA in business. He is currently working in life, health and financial services at Hummel Insurance Agency, Inc., and served as the president of the East Holmes Academic Booster Club. "The Foundation does a fantastic job providing scholarships for area students," Karl stated. "Holmes County residents have been, and continue to be, extremely fortunate to have this resource available to them."


Jennifer Thorpe graduated from West Holmes High School in 1996, where she was active in student government, ski club, and history club. She also played volleyball and basketball. She continued her education at The Ohio State University where she majored in Family Resource Management. Jennifer graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology with specialization in Family Financial Planning in 2000. Jennifer maintains that her scholarship was "extremely" important while she pursued her college education. "It really helped me out," she stated. She is currently working as a Credit Analyst at the Commercial & Savings Bank, where she has been employed since July of 2000.

Ella Waltman is a 2011 graduate of Ashland University. "Words cannot describe how appreciative I am of your financial support that you have given me," she said. "In December, I graduated from Ashland University with a Bachelors of Science in Child & Family Studies. I can honestly say that without your support, I would not have been able to graduate. Thank you for helping me build a promising future!"



Sean Warner attended Boston University from 1994 to 1997. He then obtained a B.A. in 1999 and a J.D. in 2002 from The Ohio State University. Warner is currently a Holmes County Prosecutor and former attorney at Critchfield, Critchfield & Johnston. "I have, however," he continues, "benefited more personally than professionally from my educational experience. Education enhances a person's appreciation of all aspects of life." Warner attributes part of his educational access to the financial aid he received through the Holmes County Education Foundation (HCEF). "The HCEF has helped me and many local people reach our educational and career goals by lending financial support at a critical state on our path to higher education...[they] provided an opportunity to succeed by making college more affordable and, therefore, possible."


Keely Wolfe is a 1998 graduate of West Holmes High School and 2002 graduate of Ashland University, is currently a teacher and Intervention Specialist at the Holmes County Training Center. She is responsible for maintaining classroom lessons and assisting students with their own specific needs. "I've learned many techniques to practice in my classroom," Keely said. "The Holmes County Education Foundationhelped pay my tuition fees, books and lab fees...I'm glad I didn't have to leave Holmes County to pursue my degree and to be employed."



Dan Wolff graduated from Cornell University in 2009, majoring in Operations Research and Information Engineering. He now serves on the Cybersecurity Emerging Threats Team with the Internal Revenue Service. "Every year, graduating seniors from Holmes County schools are left trying to determine is college is a financially viable option," Wolff states. "These responsible students struggle to balance their educational dreams with their fiscal realities. But, the Holmes County Education Foundation (HCEF) helps to alleviate some of this burden by helping to fill in this gap that would have otherwise been an obstacle to continued education. I personally have benefitted greatly from the services provided. The support that I received enabled me to attend an Ivy University which has led to an amazing career... in Washington, D.C. I couldn't be more appreciative of everything that the HCEF has done for my family and me."


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