Lewis County kindergartners get ‘seed’ money for college




Posted on May 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

Updated Wednesday, May 23 at 5:22 PM

MOSSYROCK, Wash. -  In an attempt to help the environment, kindergartners in Mossyrock helped themselves prepare for college.

Liz Meldrum’s morning kindergarten students each won $2,500 awards in the TransAlta Kinder Scholarship.

“I don’t think they’ve understood the magnitude of what they’ve been given,” said Meldrum.

The Mossyrock students were one of ten finalists in the 42 classrooms participating in the competition sponsored by TransAlta, the Canadian company that with a coal-fired power plant in Lewis County.

The students planted 65 Douglas fir trees at Ike Kinswa State Park near Mayfield Lake to learn about the environment and animal habitats.

Their classroom was selected as the winner in a random drawing.

Each student got $2,500 deposited into a trust fund account. It will mature and be available to them for education expenses after they graduate from high school in 2025.

That’s the same year the TransAlta plant is scheduled to shut down for environmental reasons.

A company spokesperson said the scholarships are one way to support the community long after the plant closes.

Mrs. Meldrum’s class is full of hopeful doctors, veterinarians and police officers.

College may be years away, but they already know how important it is.

“Because if you don’t go to college you can’t do what you want to do,” said 6-year-old Marshall.