Claire Krizek, Amy Beckman, NCRA recruiter, Erik Steffens.
The National Cooperative Refinery Association (NCRA) has awarded scholarships to two McPherson College students for demonstrating outstanding leadership.
Erik Steffens, senior, Dighton, Kan., and Claire Krizek, senior, McPherson, Kan., were awarded $1,500 each from the NCRA Leadership Award. The scholarship is open to McPherson College students, who may apply by submitting a resume highlighting their leadership.
Hope VonBorkenhagen, Vice President of Human Resources at NCRA, said the annual award was to recognize MC students who are contributing to the campus and McPherson as a whole.
“NCRA is honored to acknowledge and present exceptional student leaders with an award that promotes leadership within their school and community,” VonBorkenhagen said.
Steffens, who is majoring in business: marketing and management and minoring in entrepreneurship, has been a strong leader since he started at McPherson College. He has served as president of the McPherson College Business Club and as resident assistant for Dotzour Hall. He's also been an active volunteer in the area, working with organizations such as StepMC, the Red Cross blood drive and Numana. Already he's gained significant internship experience at Crops USA, Lane Scott Electric and Farm Bureau Insurance.
Receiving the scholarship will help potential employers to realize what he's capable of, Steffens said.
"There were a lot of quality people that applied for it," he said. "I was really happy to be recognized for what I do. It will open up a lot of doors to be honored as a leader from NCRA."
Krizek has also demonstrated a career full of service and leadership. She was the president of the McPherson College Business Club in her junior year and will serve as vice-president this year. She has been an active member of cheer and dance team for all of high school – where she was a captain of the team – and three years at McPherson College. She has also been an active member of the National Society of Leadership and Success at MC, is involved with the Student Government Association. Krizek is a student member of the Kansas Society of CPAs, which recognized her last year with the prestigious John J Killian Scholarship that goes to only one full-time student who is a junior majoring in accounting at an independent Kansas college or university. She has volunteered for Special Olympics, United Way, Numana and Kiwanis, among other community organizations. Her work experience has included interning at Adams, Brown, Beran & Ball in McPherson, Kan., and previous internships with Koch Industries in Wichita, Kan. – where she will start her career after graduation next May.
Krizek said the NCRA scholarship was a great way to show how she has been a leader already.
"I was really excited because along with being a scholarship, it's a big honor," she said. "Leadership isn't something that's just your grades or how you perform in the classroom – it's people recognizing an ability in you to go above and beyond."