In 1895 a Methodist revival so impressed area ranchers they contributed funds to purchase a bell for the church. The bell, now known as the “Cowboy Bell”, has become a symbol of support for the Church, giving of service to the community, and a focus on reaching families. The Cowboy Bell Scholarship Fund, established in 1977, provides financial assistance to local high school graduates wishing to continue their education. Hundreds of students have been aided over the years. Recently, over 225 students have received the scholarship each year.
To qualify, applicants must be graduates of a local high school – Artesia, Lake Arthur, Dexter, Hagerman, or Roswell schools – and planning to attend college full-time. There are no restrictions on age, gender, marital status, race, religion, or area of study.
After the first semester of college, students must maintain a 2.5 or better cumulative GPA and be classified as full-time at their college. Awards are limited to a total of 8 consecutive semesters.
Awards are made for one academic year and applicants must reapply each Spring for the upcoming school year.
Church members, Sunday school classes, small groups, and individuals contribute to the fund. Some make regular contributions while others donate in memory or in honor of a loved one. The contributions received each year are the basis of the amount of the awards the following year.
The Cowboy Bell Scholarship Fund is not currently endowed. However, this remains a long-term goal for the committee and anyone wishing to assist us is invited to contact us through email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone through the Church Office, 575-622-1881.
Kati Yates, Chairperson
Applications are available in early January and must be returned to the office near the end of February. The Committee reviews each application and meets in April to finalize awards. Students are notified in May whether they have been awarded a scholarship, the amount, and when each semester’s checks can be picked-up from the scholarship office.
The committee strives to have a representative at the awards ceremony for each high school to present a certificate to the graduating students who will receive a check that Fall.