By Madeline Luke
The Anne Krapu-High Plains Reader Journalism Scholarship has awarded Laura Simmons of Fargo $3000 in grant and internship for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 grant cycles. Ms. Simmons is in her sophomore year at the Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Illinois. Which is a nationally top-ranked program.
She has written articles for the High Plains Reader on pressing issues for North Dakotans, including the proposed Summit Corporation carbon sequestration project, a controversial concentrated animal feeding operation in Grand Forks County and its impact on the issue of local control, and the consequences of the overturning of Roe v. Wade in this state.
The second oldest of four girls, she attended Fargo North High School where, in her sophomore journalism class she could write about anything she wanted and soon discovered “journalism combined my many interests into a possible career.” In her two years since leaving Fargo North, she has succeeded in her studies and written for the Daily Northwesterner, the school paper, which has produced award-winning journalists, as well as the High Plains Reader.
Although busy with her schoolwork and jobs needed to help with tuition and living expenses, Ms. Simmons finds, “The more I write articles and immerse myself in journalism, I'm luckily discovering new reasons to enjoy it… Through journalism, I feel I'm doing something good for my community.”
The Anne Krapu-HIgh Plains Reader Scholarship was founded in 2018, after the untimely death of Anne Krapu at age 31. Truly, she epitomized the Abraham Lincoln quote, “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.”
She wrote a weekly column for the Valley City Times Record at age 16 until she graduated from high school. Shed then went on to contribute to the High Plains Reader and even was the guest liberal for Rob Port’s Forum column. She visited over 50 countries, earning her way by teaching English, often in post-conflict zones or petro states. Her other job, which also started when she was 16, was staffing political campaigns, locally and nationally. A self-avowed “news junkie,” through her travels and passionate interest in international relations and politics, Anne knew well the power of an independent press.
The Scholarship, founded by her families in Valley City and at the HPR, has awarded over $8,000 to help young North Dakota writers who wish to become journalists.
For information about applying for the 2024 cycle, please go to the Fargo-Moorhead Area Foundation website, then click on the following tabs: Student/FMAF Scholarship/Anne Krapu-HPR Journalism Scholarship.
Tax-free donations can be made by check to FM Foundation fbo Anne Krapu Journalism Scholarship, Fargo-Moorhead Area Foundation, 409 7th St S. To donate online, go to Fargo-Moorhead Area Foundation website, click on Donors and Fundholders/Existing Funds, then search for Anne Krapu/HPR Journalism Non-Endowed Scholarship.
Questions? (701) 235-0756
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