With Grandparents Day just a few days away, First National Bank of Omaha and Nebraska State Treasurer Don Stenberg today announced Dear Grandchild, a program for grandparents, offering a total of $6,000 in scholarship money into Nebraska Educational Savings Trust (NEST) 529 college savings accounts.
Six winners will receive scholarships of $1,000 each for their grandchildren. Money for the prizes is being provided by First National Bank of Omaha, program manager for NEST.
The entry period runs now through Oct. 9. Grandparents across the United States may enter the drawing. Great aunts and uncles also may enter.
This is the third year the Dear Grandchild scholarship program has been offered, with more than 375 letters received for the drawing in 2014. The letters will not be judged for content; winners will be randomly drawn from all those entered.
“More and more grandparents are contributing to a 529 account for their grandchildren because they recognize the lifelong impact that gift will have on a child’s life,” said Deborah Goodkin, Managing Director of NEST at First National Bank of Omaha. “Our hope is that grandparents will learn about the possibilities of saving with NEST and that they will take advantage of this great chance to win a $1,000 scholarship to add to their savings for a grandchild.”
“As a grandfather myself, I understand the very special relationship between a grandparent and a grandchild,” Treasurer Stenberg said. “I have enjoyed reading about those relationships in the heartfelt letters grandparents have written in past years. I also have enjoyed talking with grandparents as they look for sound ways to invest in the future. Grandparents today tell me they are oftentimes in the best financial position to help save for their grandchildren’s college educations."
In Dear Grandchild, a grandparent writes a letter to a grandchild, telling him or her why the grandchild should go to college and sharing the grandparent’s hopes and dreams for the child’s future.
Stenberg suggested that a grandparent could share the letter with the grandchild in a private moment or as part of a gift for a special occasion.
Each letter must include a cover sheet with the following information: the entrant’s name, address, phone number, and relationship to the child. The letter and accompanying information may be emailed to NEST@fnni.com with the subject line, NEST Dear Grandchild Drawing. Letters also may be sent to NEST Dear Grandchild Drawing, 1620 Dodge Street, Stop 1105, Omaha, NE 68197-1105. All letters received by NEST will be entered into the drawing to win one of six $1,000 prizes.
The scholarship will be awarded to the grandparent and deposited into an account owned by the Nebraska Educational Savings Trust, held on behalf of the designated grandchild. Each winner may split the scholarship among up to four grandchildren.
The Dear Grandchild scholarship program was developed to encourage families to establish a tradition of making contributions to college savings accounts.
About First National Bank of Omaha
First National Bank of Omaha is a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska. First National of Nebraska and its affiliates have more than $23 billion in assets and 5,000 employee associates. Primary banking offices are located in Nebraska, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota and Texas.
NEST is a tax-advantaged 529 college savings plan and provides four plans to help make saving for college simple and affordable: NEST Direct College Savings Plan, the NEST Advisor College Savings Plan, the Bloomwell 529 Education Savings Plan, and the State Farm 529 Savings Plan. The Nebraska State Treasurer serves as Program Trustee. Union Bank & Trust Company serves as Program Manager, and all investments are approved by the Nebraska Investment Council. Families nationwide are saving for college using Nebraska’s 529 College Savings Plans, which have more than 285,000 accounts, including over 94,000 in Nebraska. Visit NEST529.com and treasurer.nebraska.gov for more information.