First National Bank of Omaha and Nebraska State Treasurer Don Stenberg today announced the winners of the Dear Grandchild contest. Winners will receive a total of $8,000 in scholarship money into NEST 529 college savings accounts for their grandchildren.
Dear Grandchild invited grandparents to write letters to grandchildren, sharing the grandparents’ hopes and dreams and urging the grandchildren to plan for college. Great aunts and uncles also were eligible to enter. More than 290 were entered into the drawing. Four were randomly selected as winners to receive scholarships of $2,000 each, provided by First National Bank of Omaha, Program Manager for NEST, Nebraska’s 529 college savings plans.
The winners are as follows:
- Kimberly Barnes, Papillion, Neb.
- Merry Hadfield, Plattsmouth, Neb.
- Susan Fulton, Omaha, Neb.
- Victoria Springer, Lincoln, Neb.
“Thank you to all the grandparents and great aunts and uncles who wrote sincere and tender letters to the special children in their lives in the Dear Grandchild contest. The letters expressed the hopes and dreams of all of us for children in Nebraska and across this nation. We all wish for children’s success and happiness, and we know that higher education, whether at a four-year college, technical school, or graduate program, will make a difference in these young lives. Saving through a NEST savings account is a step toward making these dreams reality,” said Stenberg, Trustee of NEST.
“This contest proved to be a great opportunity for grandparents to share hopes and dreams for their grandchildren’s future,” said Deborah Goodkin, Managing Director of NEST at First National Bank of Omaha, the NEST Program Manager. “We were truly inspired by the thoughtfulness of these letters and the passion grandparents showed for their grandchildren to pursue higher education. Clearly, grandparents want much success and happiness for their grandchildren.”
Excerpts are included below:
“What I wish for you is a continued quest for knowledge. You are only 5 ½ , but you are like a sponge for learning. I want to make sure you continue on this knowledge journey your entire life. You never stop learning. Even if you live to be 100,” Merry Hadfield of Plattsmouth wrote to her granddaughter Ella.
“Grandma wants you to dream large and live your life to the fullest. It doesn’t matter what you decide to do, live the life you can imagine. This will bring you contentment and happiness…Keep your head up and your heart and mind open. Life isn’t always about getting. You will find that when you give of yourself, you will feel the best,” Susan Fulton of Omaha wrote to her grandsons Thomas and James and to her new grandchild to be born in July.
“We love many qualities about you both; however, one trait rises above the others – your imaginations. You both are creative and full of great ideas in whatever situation you are in…We eagerly look forward to the days you both begin college…Until then, please continue to dream, be inspired, and enjoy the gift of learning. We will do our part, too. We will continue to encourage, support, and delight in you both. Most importantly, we will love you both ‘to the moon and back,’” wrote Victoria Springer of Lincoln to her and her husband’s grandchildren Tyler, 10, and Alaina, 8.