Julie Farr Scholarship
In memory of long-time Colorado Odyssey of the Mind supporter, Julie Farr, we are pleased to offer scholarship awards totaling $500. Scholarship awards may be applied toward the cost of obtaining an education at any university, college, community college, or specialized post-secondary school. Applicants must have been involved with Odyssey of the Mind, but do not need to be currently participating. Applicants must also be planning to attend a post-secondary education institution in the upcoming fall semester and have been involved in the Colorado Odyssey of the Mind program.
Application Process – CLOSED for Spring 2018
To become eligible, complete the Scholarship Online Application. You will be asked to respond to the following three questions. Your response may take any form, format or style you wish, but should be limited to no more than 350 words for each question.
- How has Odyssey of the Mind changed your life?
- How will you continue to use what you have learned in Odyssey of the Mind in your day-to-day life?
- How will you give back to Odyssey of the Mind so others may benefit from the program?
In addition, please submit a letter of recommendation by an Odyssey of the Mind coach, high school administrator, teacher, or college professor to firstname.lastname@example.org. This is limited to 300 words.
Only complete applications received by March 31st will be considered. Applications and supporting materials can be emailed to: email@example.com.
Scholarship recipients will be announced at the State Tournament Awards Ceremony on April 7th at Erie High School.
The recipient of the 2018 Julie Farr Scholarship is Daniell Plomondon. Daniell currently attends Colorado State University and is majoring in Neuroscience and Biological Education.
Daniell has participated in Colorado Odyssey of the Mind since 2004. She has participated in all of the problems 1-5 and, along the way her team has received two Omers and a Ranatra Fusca! Her recommender wrote – Taking a minimalist approach to costumes, props, and set, Daniell helped transform ordinary cardboard into detailed works of art for her 2013-14 Odyssey of the Mind competitive solution. This creativity earned her team a spot at World Finals with special recognition for keeping their budget under $10 by using recycled and trash items. This same year, the team had no official coach, until the recommender stepped in – in name only – so the team could move forward. Her recommender shared that over the years Daniell’s older team became a mentor to younger teams.
The last two years Daniell has continued with Odyssey as a judge, judging nearly every problem throughout tournament season. Daniell, from your Colorado OM family, we are fortunate you desire to become a teacher, future coach, and continue to share the Odyssey spirit, and we honor you with the Julie Farr scholarship.
This year’s recipient embodies the spirit of Odyssey. What stood out to the committee was that she emphasized teamwork throughout the years, even as the members changed. She described her teams as a modge-podge of people from different interests of varying grades and social circles, but she had yet to find a group of 7 problem-solvers that did not feel like a family. She said, “Odyssey has taught me that limitations placed on a problem are not obstacles meant to inhibit me, rather they are guidelines to structure my solution…I know now to look for the loophole, to consider a unique approach, or to look at a problem with a different perspective.”
The mutual respect she and her coach (her recommender) had for each other was touching. The recipient hopes to coach a team that evolves into a family with the same love and creativity as her coach has done for her team. Her coach said that her enthusiasm for life, her compassion and empathy for those around her, and her ability to think outside the box make her one in a million.
A nine-year Odyssey of the Mind participant, 5th place World Finals recipient in 2016, Ranatra Fusca winner in both long term and spontaneous for 2017: she will study neuroscience at Oberlin College in the fall. Congratulations to Jocelyn Scott from Buena Vista.
Alexander (Zander) Louie
Erie High School’s Zander Louie played a key role in his team’s outstanding performance this season, his coach describing him as the glue holding the team together, while Zander is quick to credit all for their contributions. Zander has participated in Colorado Odyssey teams for 7 years, starting in 6th grade. He credits his Odyssey experiences for adding to his personal development, his growing confidence in tackling uncomfortable things, a growing comfort in performing in front of an audience, his ability to work with others and his confidence in taking on leadership. He feels that Odyssey’s lessons will follow him for a lifetime. Steadily making his own contribution, in High School years he was a lead force in keeping his team viable, even during times when they had to lead themselves while searching for a coach. His coach has high praise for his humble-but-effective leadership skills in bringing out the best in others, while Zander has equal praise for inspiration from the coaches. Zander hopes to continue to contribute to Odyssey in various volunteer capacities, including judge and coach, wherever he is needed. Zander plans to enroll at the University of Colorado to study computer science. We wish him the best success!
The Scholarship Award Committee would like to congratulate Caitlyn Wayment for winning the 2015 Julie Farr Scholarship. She is currently studying Biological Sciences and Spanish at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, and has the goal of attending graduate school in the medical field in the future, while still remaining involved in extracurricular activities. A past coach of Caitlyn describes her as the “nuts and bolts team member who remembered the details of the problem, looked for the ‘loophole’ in ‘spontaneous’, and watched for what needed to be done at performance time.”
Our voting board members described Caitlyn as someone who stands out for her unselfish contributions to the Odyssey program. Through her application and letter of recommendation, we were clearly able to see her ability to think on her feet and work well under pressure seemingly without needing the glory for herself, but for her team in both Odyssey of the Mind and life in general. Caitlyn is someone who embodies each of the Odyssey qualities we see in all of our participants, and she is someone we are proud to call a part of our Odyssey family. We congratulate Caitlyn on her success, and wish her best of luck as she continues on her path in the future.
Our first recipient told us that Odyssey has given him both leadership skills to utilize in the short term as well as the long term. By comparing the long term Odyssey solutions and the spontaneous solutions, we heard about his dual abilities in this area. The recipient understands the contribution of each individual to a team and has become accustomed to living a creative lifestyle. This recipient also plans to stay involved Colorado Odyssey as he pursues his bachelors at the University of Denver.
Our second recipient has taken risks in her life and school and will continue to do so in college. As a woman entering college at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in NY, she plans to pursue Biomedical Engineering. This recipient has learned from Odyssey that taking risks can lead to huge rewards. Additionally, as an Odyssey participant, this recipient learned about and was excited by science, technology, engineering and mathematics and gained the confidence that not all women do to pursue a career in the STEM field. This recipient was a member of a team for two years in middle school, but continued to contribute to Odyssey of the Mind throughout her high school years and was a judge this year who mentored new judges. Odyssey has also given this recipient the opportunity to learn from her mistakes. We are excited for this recipient to join the NY Odyssey community when she gets there and wish her all the luck as she takes the next step in her education.