The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Siena Heights offers scholarship agreement for Morenci students 12.12

Written by David Green.

Students heading for small, private colleges soon learn that scholarships and grants often level off the difference in tuition costs compared with a state-supported school.

Local students looking at Siena Heights University now know there’s a promise of scholarship funds reserved for Morenci graduates.

Pending approval next month by the board of education, Morenci will enter into a partnership with Siena that guarantees a variety of financial awards up to $122,500 in each year of a four-year commitment.

Financial help is not uncommon, said Frank Hribar, vice president for enrollment management. In fact, there’s an average tuition discount rate of about 30 percent.

The difference now is that assistance is guaranteed to any new Morenci graduate enrolled on a full-time basis. Without the guarantee, those applying for admission late might not have funding available. It’s the guarantee, Hribar said, that makes the situation different compared to students from outside the district.

“We want students who are talented and able to consider a college education,” Hribar said, “and to consider Siena.”

Siena’s commitment guarantees merit scholarships to those who qualify:

• up to five Trustee Scholarships of $10,000 per academic year;

• up to five Presidential Scholarships of $8,500 a year;

• up to five Dean’s Scholarships of $6,000 a year.

For those who don’t qualify for a merit scholarship, Siena guarantees a minimum amount of $5,000 in institutional financial aid to any qualified, regular admission graduate of Morenci Area Schools, inclusive of athletic grants.

In addition to the $5,000 commitment, Morenci students will be eligible to compete for one of two one-year scholarships in the area of health care or international business.

Siena is also offering Morenci staff members opportunities for professional development both in Morenci and at the college campus.

Similar partnerships have been established with Adrian and Blissfield high schools, but Hribar said the university is not interested in a blanket agreement with the Lenawee ISD.

“We want to make each one unique,” he said. “And we want to be partners before we create an agreement.”

Morenci superintendent of schools Kyle Griffith first met with Siena officials in several months ago to talk about the possibility of creating a scholarship arrangement.

 “I want to increase the number of students going to college,” Griffith said.

Hribar considers the agreement as a foundation to build upon.

“What we get excited about is the spirit of the cooperation,” he said. “It’s fun to dream about it and think about what we can come up with. There’s a lot that can be done.”

Siena president Sister Peg Albert, OP. PhD., appreciates the connection the agreement makes with a local community.

“This agreement is just another example of the community collaboration Siena Heights University has always tried to foster,” she said. “We have had a strong relationship with Morenci schools in the past, and it has always had an outstanding reputation of educating its students. We are proud to enter into this partnership that will benefit both Morenci and Siena Heights.”

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