First Wind now accepting scholarship applications

First Wind, an independent U.S.-based wind energy company, announced that applications are now open and available online for its 2013 scholarship program.

Entering its fourth full year, First Wind Scholars will make scholarships available to qualified high school seniors in all communities where the company has projects in operation or advanced stages of development.

First Wind owns and operates three wind farms in Hawaii – Kaheawa Wind on Maui, and the Kawailoa and Kahuku Wind farms on Oahu.

Students may apply if they are high school seniors attending a public or private high school in the Kahului, Laie, Waialua, Wahiawa, Kahului, Lahaina, Kihei or Wailuku communities, and they are planning to enroll in full-time degree programs focused on science or technology.

Eligible students may come from Maui High School, Baldwin High School, Lahainaluna High School, Kihei Public Charter High School, St. Anthony Junior Senior High School, Kamehameha Schools, Maui campus and King Kekaulike High School.

First Wind Scholars recipients will be awarded a one-time $3,000 scholarship for a year. The company also awards a $5,000 scholarship, renewable for up to four years, to the year’s single most qualified applicant.

Last year, there were four recipients from Hawaii. They each received $3,000 scholarships. The two Maui recipients are Matthew Matasci from St. Anthony Junior Senior High School, who attends the University of Notre Dame and studies civil engineering; and Abigail Okazaki from Kamehameha Schools Maui, who attends Yale University and studies environmental science.

“We are very pleased to open up the application process for our First Wind Scholars, which demonstrate our commitment to the communities that host our project sites across the Northeast, West and Hawaii,” said Carol Grant, senior vice president of external affairs at First Wind. “Last year, we received the most applications ever, and this year we hope to see even more. We hope students continue to take advantage of this scholarship program.”

In order to be eligible for the scholarship, students need a grade point average of at least 2.75 and must plan to enroll in full-time undergraduate study with a major in the sciences and/or engineering or technology. Applications are open and available online, with all submissions due by Feb. 15. Applications are evaluated on a number of factors, including academic performance, work experience, school and community activities and a 300-word essay. The First Wind Scholars recipients will be announced in May.

Since 2010, First Wind has issued 40 one-year $3,000 scholarships for college-bound high school students from project communities, who have an expressed interest in science, technology and/or the environment. Additionally, the company has granted three, four-year $5,000 scholarships for select students from the applicant pools.

The program and selection of recipients is administered by Scholarship Management Services, a leading designer and manager of scholarship and tuition reimbursement programs for corporations and other institutions. The program has grown each year and scholarships have been awarded to 43 students totaling more than $175,000.

For more information, or for eligible students to fill out an online application, go to