12th Annual Granite City, Ill. 2021 Jane Becker SOAR Scholarship Award

FROM:             Jeff Rains, Chapter President

SUBJECT:        12th  Annual SOAR Scholarship Award

 The Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees (SOAR) Chapter will make our annual scholarship awards to 2021 area high school graduates who are related to an active SOAR member.  The presentation will take place at the SOAR Awards Banquet (location to be determined) on August 9th, 2021.  The scholarship winner(s) must attend the banquet when the scholarships are awarded.

 The award is fully described in the guidelines enclosed with this letter, along with the application and certification forms. These must be completed and returned to the scholarship committee before the essay contest.  The major eligibility requirements is the applicant must be related (children, grandchildren, great grandchildren) to an active current SOAR member and registered to attend school on a full-time basis, and that the school be one that will normally lead to a recognized and accredited bachelor’s or associate’s degree, or professional or technical certificate in a program of study that is at least two years in length.

 Applicants are required to write an essay about the labor-oriented topic listed below. The essay will be submitted to the Scholarship Committee on or before Saturday, APRIL 10th, 2021.  The essay should be a minimum of two pages in length.  Below is the study topic:


“ The Importance of Presidential Appointments”


            The 2021 SOAR essay will focus on the importance of Presidential Appointments.

The essay should focus on how Presidential Appointments can affect our everyday lives. For example appointments for Cabinet Members, Judges, Directors of Agencies (Ex; NLRB ,OSHA, EPA, Consumer Protection, Veterans Administration----,Etc,Etc).

 The Illinois Labor History Society, local libraries and the Internet are excellent sources to obtain books and other study related materials and information for the essay. 

              Your assistance is greatly needed to help get this information into the hands of the 2021 high school graduates in your family and at your local school who may qualify.  The students will need copies of all the enclosed documents (Rules & Guidelines, Certificate of High School, Certificate of Qualifying Union and Application) as well as this letter announcing the essay topic.  Please feel free to make as many copies as needed.

 For information regarding resource materials and to obtain additional copies of the documents contact committee chair Jeff Rains (618-452-1130) email [email protected] .

 Mail the Applications and Certificates to SOAR SCHOLARSHIP, 10 Central Industrial Dr., Suite 4, Granite City, IL 62040.

             Deadline for submitting necessary documents to participate is April 10th , 2021.


The 2021 Scholarships will be available for use to begin studying at any accredited college or university in the United States or Canada for high school graduating students as described in the following paragraphs. Scholarships will be awarded each year by the Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees (SOAR).

Any member of a high school class graduating between January 1 and July 1 of the calendar year of the award (or any extension of that school term) who is, 1) certified by the high school principal as a graduate; and 2) is a son/daughter, grandson/granddaughter, or great grandchild of a current member of SOAR; or any current members of this SOAR Chapter; or the legal ward of any member, spouse or retiree of SOAR is eligible to apply.

 In addition, if the parent or legal guardian shall have died or shall have become permanently disabled while any applicant shall have been a bona fide student enrolled in high school and pursuing a high school course of study, the applicant, if otherwise eligible, shall be eligible to apply for the scholarship.  Stepchildren are eligible only if they are adopted or are legal wards of the qualifying parent. 

The scholarship is entirely unrestricted as to gender, race, religion and political affiliation.  But, due to past circumstances, the winner must attend the Annual SOAR Scholarship/Awards event when the winners are announced.

Students who meet the requirements above must submit the completed application forms with the signed certificates of the high school principal and of the USW Local Union and/or SOAR officials and postmarked no later than APRIL4th ,2021.  The scholarships will be awarded on the basis of the facts, content and quality of the winning  essays.  Financial need is not considered. 

SOAR will make available a list of the essay topic related to issues on Organized Labor and America's Retirees and Seniors, which all applicants will receive. 

Applicants must submit their essay on or before  SATURDAY, APRIL 10, 2021  to the SOAR Scholarship Committee. 

All essays must be a minimum of two pages in length. Each essay will be submitted to the Scholarship Judges which will not include any personal references that would disclose the identity of the author.  Each essay will be blind evaluated by at least three (3) judges who will select the winning essays

All submitted essays become the property of the SOAR Chapter.

Scholarship Rules / Guidelines (cont.)                                     

 The scholarships will be paid in two (2) payments to the recipient(s). The first payment will be paid upon presentation of evidence to the Scholarship Committee that the individual is accepted as a full-time student in an institution accredited by a regional association of colleges or by a State Department of Education. The second payment will be paid when the committee receives copies of the first semester completed maintaining a “C” or above cumulative average in all courses to date.  This award will be invalid and no payment made to any individual who fails to register in an approved college or university prior to December 1 of the year in which the award is made.

 Students who are awarded other scholarships are eligible to receive the SOAR Scholarship.  However, the institution the student is attending will be informed of the nature and amount of the scholarship awarded by SOAR.  If a student is awarded a scholarship and is admitted to an institution such as the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy or the U.S. Air Force Academy, where normal expenses are fully met, scholarship assistance will be withdrawn and the next individual on the eligibility list will be awarded the scholarship.

There are no restrictions as to the curriculum a student may follow, except that it be full time and that it be one that will normally lead to a recognized and accredited bachelor's degree, associate's degree, or professional or technical certificate in a program of study that is of at two years in length.

The SOAR Scholarship Committee will be responsible for the administration of the Scholarship, for the selections of the essay supervisor and judges, and for reporting the names of the essay winners selected by the judges to the Executive Board of the SOAR Chapter.  Except for the names of the Scholarship winners, all deliberations pertaining to the selection process will be entirely confidential within the Scholarship Committee.  All matters pertaining to this Scholarship will be decided by the Scholarship Committee with the guidance of the Executive Board of the SOAR Chapter, subject to approval by the delegates of SOAR at a regularly scheduled delegate meeting.  This decision will be final.

The winners will be notified by phone or mail by the Scholarship Committee Chairperson and will be invited to the “must attend” annual SOAR Recognition Banquet to accept the Annual Scholarship Award.

 The winning essays may be printed and distributed throughout the Steelworkers Union and Retiree organizations for the pleasure and benefit of the entire membership.

 If more information is needed, contact the person named in the accompanying documents.