District 1 Announces Scholarship Winners

Wed July 29, 2009 - West Edition
CEG

Caltrans Transportation Engineer and Professional Engineers in California Government officer Rick Mayberry presents Willits High School recent graduate Michael Koller with his scholarship check.
Caltrans Transportation Engineer and Professional Engineers in California Government officer Rick Mayberry presents Willits High School recent graduate Michael Koller with his scholarship check.



The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) announced that Michael Koller and Simon Schafer are winners of the District 1 2009 Scholarships. Each will receive scholarship funds in the amount of $700 to apply toward their future education.

Michael Koller, a recent graduate of Willits High School, wishes to pursue a career in Mechanical Engineering and is particularly interested in the fields of energy, transportation, and robotics. In Koller’s own words, “I believe engineering will provide the future direction in meeting the demands that a global economy dictates through better, more efficient transportation [ships, rail, truck] design, better materials, and improved transportation corridors.” Koller had a grade point average of 3.89. “Koller’s history and future goals exhibit his commitment and dedication to academics and extra curricular activities as well as a passion to pursue a career in engineering. Professional Engineers in California Government (PECG) is pleased to award this scholarship to Michael to assist him in attaining his career goals. Thank you to all of the applicants, it was an extremely competitive candidate pool all of whom will achieve great things in the engineering and science field,” said Jeffrey L. Pimentel, PECG officer.

Simon Schafer, a recent graduate of Ukiah High School, wishes to pursue a career in Mechanical Engineering and is particularly interested in developing “green” powered and manufactured vehicles in order to benefit the environment, and decrease dependence on non-renewable sources of fuel. In Schafer ’s own words, “I have an interest in developing ’green’ powered and manufactured cars, trains, and other vehicles in order to benefit the environment, and decrease dependence on non-renewable sources of energy.” Schafer had a grade point average of 3.94.

The District 1 Scholarship Program began in 2007. The scholarships are competitive and based upon the applicant’s commitment to a career in transportation, academic record and participation in extracurricular or community-related activities. Financial need is a consideration, but not a primary factor. This year, two $700 scholarships were offered: The PECG Engineering and Science Scholarship, made possible by contributions from PECG, the California Transportation Foundation (CTF), and donations made in memory of Dean Bottini (a long-time Caltrans employee and advocate for education); and, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1000 DLC 749 Scholarship, made possible by contributions from SEIU, the California Transportation Foundation (CTF), and donations made in memory of Dean Bottini.

“Congratulations to Michael and Simon for winning the 2009 District 1 Scholarships,” said District 1 Director Charlie Fielder. “These students have a bright future ahead of them, and we wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors.”