Scholarship Opportunities

The Community Foundation for McHenry County offers scholarships to students seeking to advance their education. Each Scholarship Fund was created by members of the McHenry County community and designated for a certain cause, school, or region. Each scholarship’s history, purpose and eligibility criteria can be found under the scholarship names listed below.

All 2022 Scholarships have been awarded and the application process is now closed. To see the list of this year’s scholarship recipients along with past winners, visit our Scholarship Recipients webpage.

Applications for The Foundation’s 2023 Scholarships will open in December 2022.

For questions or more information about The Foundation’s annual grant opportunities contact Lyndsey Thompson, Director of Program Services at Lyndsey@thecfmc.org or call 815-338-4483.

Allen Family Scholarship

The Allen Family Scholarship was established in memory of Robert and Georgia Allen to assist Rolling Meadows High School graduating seniors to continue in a higher education program of their choice. This scholarship is to assist a student in achieving a two or four year degree.

Eligibility: Students graduating from Rolling Meadows High School who hold a grade point average of 3.5 or higher (based on 4.0 scale) and demonstrate commitment to volunteer service in their community. Additional preference will be given to applicants whose parent has served, or is currently serving in the United States Military. 

Award: One 2-year scholarship of $1,000 per year.

Cooney Scholarship

The Cooney Scholarship is awarded annually annually to a current or former graduate of a Woodstock, Illinois high school, either public or private. This scholarship is to assist a student(s) pursuing a two-year or four-year college degree in any area of endeavor.

Eligibility: Applicants must be a current graduating student or former graduate from a Woodstock public or private high school. Preference will be given to applicants based on need and academic record. Applicants shall have a demonstrated involvement, past or present, with a not-for-profit organization located in and serving McHenry County.

Award: Multiple scholarships available.

Don Penza Athletic Scholarship

The Don Penza Athletic Scholarship is designed to support athletic students of Marian Central Catholic High School determined by FACTS Grant & Aid Assessment as in need of financial support. 

Eligibility: Applicants must be enrolled at Marian Central Catholic High School, have a minimum GPA of 2.5, and participate in MCCHS athletics. Award selection is not limited by gender and will consider the diversity of athletic involvement. There is no limit on the number of times a student can win the scholarship award during their tenure at MCCHS.

Award: Multiple scholarships available.

Jennifer Samson Memorial Scholarship

The Jennifer Samson Memorial Scholarship is awarded to assist a student in achieving a two or four-year degree in any area of the Fine Arts.

Eligibility: Applicant must be a McHenry County high school graduating student who exhibits a true passion for the Visual and Performing Arts. Preference will be given to an applicant who has participated in any volunteer service and who demonstrates concern for environmental issues.

Award: One scholarship of $1,000. 

Joe Carnes Scholarship

The Joe Carnes Scholarship was established to honor the memory of Joseph Carnes and the contributions he made to the community by providing college tuition assistance for educational expenses. This scholarship is open to all majors, with preference given to applicants pursuing degrees in aviation-related fields, educational fields or public/community service fields. The scholarship is to be used at a college or university of the recipient’s choice.

Eligibility: Students graduating from Crystal Lake South High School who hold a GPA of 3.0 or higher (based on a 4.0 scale), who exhibit financial need and demonstrate positive involvement in school, community and/or church activities and academic interests related to those of Mr. Carnes (listed above). 

Award: One scholarship of $1,000.

LeAnn Golembiewski Memorial Scholarship

The purpose of the LeAnn Golembiewski Memorial Scholarship is to support the educational pursuits of female, varsity athletes from Marian Central Catholic High School who exhibit excellence in the classroom, the playing field and the community. This scholarship is to assist a student in achieving a two year or four year degree.

Eligibility: Applicant must be a female, graduating senior from Marian Central Catholic High School, a varsity athlete and maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA. Preference will be given to students who have experienced hardships.

Award: One 4-year scholarship of $1,000 per year.

Lorna D. Rowland Scholarship

The purpose of the Lorna D. Rowland Scholarship is to support female graduating seniors of Wauconda High School interested in pursuing a college degree in social sciences and/or social issues.

Eligibility: Female graduating senior of Wauconda High School interested in pursuing a college degree in social sciences and/or social issues, with a weighted GPA of 3.2 or higher (based on a 4.0 scale). Applicants will have taken at least 1.5 years of elective courses in Current Issues, Sociology, Psychology, History, Theater Arts, Literature or Speech. Preference will be given to applicants who have participated in at least 1 year of a non-sport related extracurricular activity.

Award: One scholarship of $1,000. 

Mariana Szczesny Scholarship

The Mariana Szczesny Scholarship was established to honor the memory of Mariana Szczesny and is intended to assist McHenry County high school graduating seniors to continue in a higher education program of their choice. This scholarship is open to all majors, for students enrolled in a four-year bachelor’s program, a two-year associates program, or a vocational/technical school.

Eligibility: Graduating high school seniors from any McHenry County high school who demonstrate academic excellence, need for financial help and community involvement. 

Award: Multiple scholarships available ranging from $1,000 – $2,000. 

Patricia McNamara Scholarship 

The Patricia McNamara Scholarship was established to honor Patti McNamara, who would have wanted the scholarship to acknowledge and reward students who exhibit a strong work ethic, dedication to the community and a love of life. 

Eligibility: Graduating Cary-Grove High School or Trinity Oaks Christian Academy seniors with a minimum 2.0 GPA or better (based on a 4.0 scale) who plan to pursue post-secondary education at an accredited vocational school, trade school or community college. 

Award: Two scholarships of $1,000. 

Ron Bendis Memorial Scholarship

The Ron Bendis Scholarship was established to honor the career and contributions Ron Bendis made to the Woodstock high school community and to individuals needing significant academic or personal support in order to graduate and pursue future opportunities.

Eligibility: Woodstock or Woodstock North High School graduating senior who after significant problems early in high school, has displayed marked improvement in academic performance, a willingness to be an active participant in school and/or outside activities, and a desire to attend a two-year or four-year post-secondary institution or training facility as a full-time student. 

Award: One scholarship of $1,000. 

TC Industries, Inc. Scholarship

The purpose of the TC Industries, Inc. Scholarship is to assist dependent children of current employees of TC Industries, Inc.

Eligibility: Dependent children of active TC Industries, Inc. employees who exhibit exceptional academic performance and dedication by maintaining a 3.0 GPA or better (based on a 4.0 scale). Applicants must be a graduating high school senior or a current student enrolled full-time in a college, university, technical or trade school in the United States and under 25 years old. Scholarships are restricted to undergraduate study. Shareholders and Unit IV employees and their dependents are ineligible for scholarship consideration.

Award: Two 4-year scholarships of $1,000 per year.

VAC Veterans Memorial Scholarship

The purpose of the VAC Veterans Memorial Scholarship is to assist the children or grandchildren of veterans with the higher education program of their choice.

Eligibility: McHenry County graduating high school senior or high school graduate who is the child, stepchild or grandchild of active duty personnel, or honorably discharged veterans of the United States military, National Guard and military reservists. Student must hold a 2.5 GPA or better (based on a 4.0 scale) and include a photocopy of the DD-214 or Certification of Post Membership when applying. 

Award: Multiple scholarships available ranging from $1,000 – $2,000. 

Woodstock Lions Club Scholarship

The primary purpose of the Woodstock Lions Club Scholarship is to provide support for educational expenses of individuals who reside within the boundaries of Woodstock Community Unit School District 200, comprising Woodstock, Illinois and the immediately surrounding unincorporated area.

Eligibility: Individuals who reside within the boundaries of District 200, comprising Woodstock, Illinois and the immediately surrounding unincorporated area and maintain a 2.5 grade point average (GPA) or higher. Students must plan to enroll or be enrolled in a four-year bachelor’s program, a two-year associates program, or a certificate program of a vocational school. Primary consideration will be given to students who cannot otherwise afford to attend school. Applicants who receive the scholarship may reapply and receive the award in subsequent years.

Award: One scholarship of $1,000.