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Kansas Wesleyan University

Two high school seniors from Kansas were recently awarded the highest scholarship available at Kansas Wesleyan University. The Eisenhower Scholars Competition, held on January 28, gave any student who qualified for the KWU Presidential Scholarship a chance to earn a 90% tuition scholarship. Elie Truhe, from Salina High School South, and Samantha Chesser, from Maize High School, each earned the prestigious award.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower initiated The Eisenhower Scholarship in the late 1960s. He selected KWU, the closest institute of higher education to his childhood home of Abilene, KS, as the university that would house his named scholarship that would be presented to students with high academic achievement. The university resurrected the scholarship after a hiatus of several years, and a half-day competition was designed to select the winners. Participating students interviewed with faculty members, participated in a group problem-solving/logic activity, took a quantitative reasoning/logic test and were asked to write an essay based on a speech President Eisenhower gave to the United Nations in December 1953.

“On our 130th anniversary year, it is fitting to reconnect the past with this new scholarship competition,” said Mark Bandré, Ed.D., vice president for enrollment management. “The Eisenhower Scholarship ensures that we are fulfilling President Eisenhower’s wishes to honor quality students at Kansas Wesleyan University and continuing to attract the brightest and the best students to our campus.”

Truhe, an academic standout at Salina High School South, has a 3.8 GPA. He intends to major in business and play tennis for the Coyotes. Chesser also has a 3.8 GPA. She plans on majoring in physics/mathematics and playing volleyball at KWU.

KWU offers numerous academic scholarships as well as financial awards that recognize students for activities and involvement in high school. Academic scholarships are calculated on a composite formula using GPA and ACT scores. Visit for more information.