Dowagiac senior selected for Honor Credit Union scholarship

DOWAGIAC — One of Dowagiac’s own was chosen as a recipient of Honor Credit Union’s annual community commitment scholarship honoring high school seniors.

Kylee Cromer, a senior at Dowagiac Union High School, was one of 24 students throughout Michigan to receive a $1,000 scholarship to be used towards furthering her education. The scholarship aligns with Honor Credit Union’s dedication to supporting the local community with an emphasis on community involvement and extracurricular activities, according to an Honor Credit press release.

Students were also selected from Niles High School, Edwardsburg High School, Ross Beatty Jr/Sr. High School and Buchanan High School.

Recently, Honor Credit Union revamped the scholarship.

Kylee Cromer

“It was done through another company before, and they just kind of helped facilitate it, but we recently took it over as our own,” said Halee Niemi, a brand coordinator at Honor Credit Union.

This year, Honor Credit Union received 106 submissions. The scholarships are facilitated through the marketing team and then they are separated out for community assistant vice president.

“I remove all names, all school names, so that it is completely blind,” Niemi said.

Each of the community assistant vice presidents go through the applicants for the region they cover. Applicants are not just selected for grade point averages but also for community involvement and other qualifications.

Using the guidance office as a resource, Cromer applied for every scholarship she qualified for.

“If I don’t take the chance then I’m probably not going to get it,” she said during a phone interview Monday.

Cromer said she was surprised to learn she had been selected and awarded the funds to further support her education.

In a normal year, Honor Credit Union contacts scholarship recipients ahead of time and then sends a representative from their region to schools for scholarship award ceremonies where students are presented with a certificate.
“This year, that didn’t happen unfortunately because of everything that’s been going on,” Niemi said.

One community assistant vice president in the Upper Peninsula connected with his recipients during a Zoom meeting.

“He was able to reach out to them through their cell phone numbers, and so it was more of a surprise,” Niemi said. “It was really cool to see their reactions and see how excited they are. Any little bit of money that goes towards your college education is huge.”

During her time as a Chieftain, Cromer has been involved with the National Honors Society, the equestrian team, powerlifting, the Rotary Interact Club and 4-H. As a freshman, she also was involved in the softball program. She also made the Class of 2020 Top 10 with a 3.87 GPA.

One memory Cromer will never forget from her high school experience is being a member of the equestrian team.

Following graduation, the senior plans to attend Kalamazoo Valley Community College and finish up her associate’s degree from Southwestern Michigan College.

After finishing her associate’s degree, she plans to transfer to Western Michigan University to study interior design.

“When I walk into a room, I am always thinking what would be cool or asking people what they want me to do with their rooms,” she said.

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