MRAA kicks off scholarship application process

The MRAA Educational Foundation has kicked off the 2016 application process for its four annual scholarships, as well as the Darlene Briggs Marine Woman of the Year Award, at

The award and scholarships are presented during the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, Dec. 5-8 in Orlando, and are intended to financially assist the professional development of those working in the marine industry. The deadline to submit a scholarship or award application is Sept. 30.

Retail members of MRAA and their employees can now complete online applications for the Kevin Lodder Scholarship, Duane Spader Leadership Development Scholarship and ABYC Scholarships. Women from throughout the boating business are eligible to be nominated or apply for the Darlene Briggs Woman of the Year Award, currently celebrating its 30th Anniversary. Both marine technical schools and marine trade associations that are members of MRAA can apply for the MRAA Technical Scholarships.

“Supporting the marine retail community and the boating business at large through education and training is at the core of our mission at MRAA, which is why we established the MRAA Educational Foundation,” said Liz Walz, MRAA vice president and MRAA Educational Foundation executive director. “These scholarships not only contribute to the success of the individual marine professionals who are selected to receive them each year, but they help us build a bigger, stronger, smarter workforce to lead this industry forward.”

A nonprofit, 501(c)3 organization, the MRAA Educational Foundation has handed out more than 60 scholarships and awards collectively worth more than $130,000 since it was launched in 2004.

The available scholarships and awards from the MRAA Educational Foundation are as follows:

  • The Kevin Lodder Scholarship covers the tuition and provides a travel stipend for the recipient to attend Spader Business Management’s Total Management 1 Workshop.
  • The MRAA Educational Foundation’s Technical Scholarships are awarded to Marine Technical Schools that train students for careers in the marine industry and to Marine Trade Associations that provide financial support to their members for technical training.
  • The MRAA Educational Foundation presents, annually, the Darlene Briggs Woman of the Year Award. This honor is presented to an outstanding woman who is actively involved in the marine industry.
  • The Duane Spader Leadership Development Scholarship, established in 2013, covers the tuition for the recipient to attend Spader Business Management’s Leadership Development Program.
  • The ABYC Scholarships, established in 2014, cover the tuition for one recipient to attend ABYC’s Introduction to Basic Marine Electric & Corrosion Protection and for another recipient to attend one of ABYC’s Certification Courses.

Donations from independent donors and corporate partners make scholarships provided by the MRAA Educational Foundation possible. To learn more about donating, or to find more information about the MRAA Educational Foundation, visit

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