Hello fellow IBPF members, I sincerely hope everyone had a memorable & blessed Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year holiday season.
I’m writing to you this month specifically about the IBPF scholarship program. Currently we don’t have anyone participating in this membership benefit but there’s still a couple months left to get in on the action. Remember, the minimum amount for those eligible is $250 but that can grow based on the financial stability of our organization.
Here is a brief review of the programs main features. Eligibility includes that the participant or their guardian be an IBPF member, that an essay be completed and that said essay be turned in to the board of directors by March 1st. The essay is based on the participant’s interpretation of the Preamble to the Constitution of the IBPF. Scholarship winners will be selected at the spring IBPF meeting. And the scholarship winners will receive a minimum of $250. Complete details about the program can be found on our website www.iowablackpowderfederation.net.
Now I’d like to share a few thoughts about the essay. I’ve talked to a few high school Guidance Counselors and they all say the same thing. That students often don't know how to begin writing essays and they are intimidated by the competition. They figure that they can't possibly write well enough to win anyway, so why bother? Well it’s up to us to remind them that $250 (possibly more) is worth the bother and to help eliminate the feelings of intimidation. I think a good confidence builder would be to tell the person writing the essay something like this, “While the writer needs to be familiar with the IBPF’s Preamble to the Constitution, the essay is more about the person writing it. We want to know about the author, their thoughts, their beliefs and their ideas. Think of the essay as writing about yourself, something you know more about than anyone else”. That message should help build confidence. We should further encourage the person to search online as there are many sites available to help with scholarship essays. How to start the essay, how to transform your thoughts into written words, how to arrange segments of the essay in the correct order, ECT. There are essay tips, examples, sample outlines and everything needed to direct the completion of the document.
Regarding the possibility of not submitting a winning essay I can only reference previous year’s results. Whenever multiple people have participated, the IBPF has voted to reward each with scholarships. Please do not perceive this as a guarantee of winning, I just want all potential candidates to know that the likelihood of being awarded a scholarship is higher than you may think.
As board members of the IBPF our intent for this program was to do something for the youth of our organization, for those seeking higher education and for our members. We want to provide a way to give something back that is both meaningful and useful. We are proud of what we’ve accomplished, excited about our future and eager to give a “hand up” to anyone interested.
A final thought about the program. As members we are the funders of this program and as such share a fundamental responsibility to promote participation. The program’s success or failure depends on us. If you know someone that qualifies please initiate contact with them. In the end they will be grateful that you took the time, that you demonstrated an interest in them, that you cared about them.
Thanks for your time.
Preamble to the Constitution of the "
We, a group of people with a deep abiding interest in black powder firearms do, band together to form the IOWA BLACK POWDER FEDERATION to promote the safe use of black powder firearms for hunting and target shooting; to encourage the collection and display of black powder firearms as a means of passing on to the emerging generations a sense of their history and importance in the building of our nation; to promote and encourage the high level of craftsmanship required in the building of safe, dependable black powder firearms for modern use; and to establish an organization that will provide opportunities for black powder shooters to engage in shooting on a state wide basis.