DUI task force gives aid to H.S. seniors scholarships

Mineral Independent | May 20, 2020 4:33 PM

As of June 2019, Montana has 35 approved county-level DUI Task Forces serving 40 counties.

These are an important tool for decreasing the state’s driver impaired-related injury and fatality rates which Montana has some of the highest in the nation.

A diverse group of community minded residents make up this committee with their meetings open to the public each quarter.

Initial funding came from driver penalty fees and under Montana Code Annotated 61-2-108, $100 of reinstated drivers’ licenses from DUIs continues to return to the county task force.

These funds help pay for overtime traffic patrols, specialty items for promotional use like T-shirts and key chains, plus, responsible alcohol sales-and-service training.

Recently the Retail Compliance Check was conducted between Saltese and Superior with one citation issued for selling alcohol to a minor.

In Mineral County, a $500 scholarship is awarded to a senior from each of the three high schools based on grade point average, extracurricular activities, volunteer and civic duties with an essay question that taps into their conscience.

Judging each application is a difficult assignment since candidates all have secondary education goals in mind and are zeroed in on scholarships for their future.

Once all three winners were notified, they were asked a final question: What advice would you give to the students behind you as they approach a new year?

Here are their answers.

Emmah Baughman, Alberton: “High school can be a lot sometimes, but just try your best to enjoy the short time you have and make the best of it! It truly goes by fast and even though I’m sure you’re tired of hearing it, you are going to miss it.”

Emma Hopwood, Superior: “Don’t let anyone else get in the way of your goals, you shape your own future, make it amazing.”

Ashley Wilson, St. Regis: “The best advice I can give is to believe in yourself and have confidence. If I could go back, I would have joined more clubs, played more sports and made more friends, but I was too shy. Always have confidence and try new things, it will make high school extremely enjoyable”!

For upcoming high school seniors who may be interested in the scholarship, once the 2020-21 school year begins, visit with your counselor about the scholarships that are available and don’t forget to ask about the Mineral County DUI Task Force opportunity.

All three winners of this year were delighted and indicated that it will be a great help as they begin a new chapter in their lives.