The Far West Masters organization has offered an annual Far West Masters College Scholarship to deserving student-athletes from the Far West division for the past 10 years. This scholarship is awarded to a high school graduate ski racer who will be attending a secondary education program. The 2019 Scholarship has been awarded to Sophia Staudenmayer. She will receive $20,000 towards her university expenses at Boston College, where she will also be a member of the NCAA ski team. An anonymous donor is matching other donations up to $10,000 per year for Sophia.

The recipient is chosen based on their combination of exemplary work ethic, academic scholarship, citizenship, and financial need. The Far West Masters Scholarship Program makes funding available for college education expenses to members of the community involved with Far West Masters, which also puts on training camps for youth racers each year. To date, funding has supported 13 Far West student-athletes to attend college in the amount of $10,000 per athlete over the past 10 years.

“I would have to say it was around eight or nine years old when I started going to camps with the masters,” Staudenmayer said. “I’ve been a scholarship kid for around six years and I have loved working with the masters. Their love of skiing is so cool and to have their support throughout my years of racing has been really great.”

Credit: Far West Masters

“Despite missing half of my classes in the winter of my junior and senior years of high school for competition and travel, I maintained a 4.07 unweighted GPA,” she continued. “As a senior, I was able to qualify for U.S. Nationals while maintaining straight-As, including 4 AP courses, and coming back from a knee injury that sidelined me for six weeks in the middle of the season.”

The goal of the Far West Masters Scholarship Program is to promote academic scholarship, citizenship and leadership within the ski racing community and keep athletes involved in ski racing that might not otherwise have a chance without financial support.  They believe keeping athletes involved in ski racing keeps them focused, teaches them discipline and helps them to be successful in the rest of their life endeavors. Most sponsored athletes go on to college, many on ski and scholastic scholarships.

Over the past 26 years, the Far West Masters has given out over $1,000,000 in funding to Far West Athletes. The program is run with no overhead. All donations are given directly to the athletes. The U.S. Ski Team has had many scholarship alumni that have competed on the World Cup circuit including Marco Sullivan, Stacey Cook, Tim Jitloff, Travis Ganong, Mark Engel, and Lila Lapanja.

For more information about this program go to: https://farwestmasters.org/scholarship_program.

Release courtesy of Far West Masters.

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