Scholarships For Aspiring Teachers Are A Priority

Acknowledging that aggressive measures need to be taken to help aspiring teachers meet their career objectives, the Gardner Family Teacher Scholarships (GiFTS) is offering $2,000 or more scholarships to qualified Yavapai County residents interested in earning an education degree.

In fact, said Robert St. Clair, GiFTS president, “The probability is that the scholarship will be larger than the minimum of $2,000.  Last year, we awarded $2,300 each to 12 students, and I suspect we’ll do better than that this year.”

St. Clair explained, “For the past couple of years, Arizona schools have faced a crisis, especially in having teachers to fill the classrooms. That is especially true in rural counties such as Yavapai.  Our foundation wants to be known as one of the strongest supporters of teachers in Central and Northern Arizona, so we’re urging interested persons to apply.”

Applicants must be Yavapai County residents who have graduated or will graduate from an accredited public high school or have resided in Yavapai County for no less than one year. They also should plan to teach in grades K-12, preferably in Yavapai County. Applicants should have no less than a 3.0 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale either in high school, college or university classes.

St. Clair also urged displaced teachers whose positon has been eliminated in a district or charter school to apply and use the scholarship to obtain additional academic endorsements for continued employment.

Since its founding 19 years ago, GiFTS has granted 161 scholarships at a cumulative value or more than $278,000.

GiFTS is a nonprofit organization administered by a volunteer board of directors who represent the population of the entire county.  It was founded by the late Gladys Gardner, a former teacher who became a Yavapai County supervisor and a state legislator. 

Applications are available online through the GiFTS website at, or through contacting Jenn Nelson at (928) 442-5138.

Written applications must be submitted by no later than midnight, March 4, 2019 — no exceptions.