The Holland/Zeeland Promise began in 2010 as a dream to replicate the Kalamazoo Promise and allow our area's young people to graduate college or technical school without the burden of crushing student debt.
Recognizing they did not have the kind of donor endowment which the Kalamazoo Promise enjoys, a group of business and community leaders came together to create the Holland/Zeeland Promise. Since its inception, the Promise has been housed at the Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area where it has received administrative support. CFHZ is proud to be part of the Promise's success story and future growth.
Promise candidates are nominated and recommended by their high school or Careerline Tech Center guidance counselors or staff at Hope College Trio's Upward Bound Program, Boys and Girls Club of Greater Holland or Latin Americans United for Progress.
Selection is based on a range of factors including high financial need, the motivation to achieve the goal of a college or technical degree and proven academic success. In addition, most Promise recipients are the first in their families to go to college.
Since 2010, more than 100 individuals and businesses have supported 47 scholars as they have pursued degrees throughout Michigan. Most donors make a four-year pledge, their “promise,” which enables us to know that we can support a student all the way through school. Today’s average annual award size per student is $12,500.
Congratulations to the Promise's largest class of new scholars!
2018: Anna, Eliseo, Elizabeth, Graciela, Ivonne, Karen, Lesly, Lydia, Melissa, Nancy, Michael and Taliah
2017: Arely, Freddie, Justin, Marisol, Marita, Micah, Taylor K. and Taylor W.
2016: David, Eric, Ivan, Julian, Kariana, Rodrigo, Srey and Tanya
2015: Diana, Edgar, Michael and Nhi
Congratulations to the Promise's most recent graduate, Yessica!
Yessica earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Western Michigan University and has begun her career in the intraoperational surgery unit at Holland Hospital.
Yessica joins Promise graduates: Yadah, Rogelio, Diana, Lily, Laura, Cynthia, Courtney, Teohary, Dave, Priscilla, Andrew, and Allison.
Special thanks to donors who are making extra contributions to come alongside the largest incoming class of scholars in Promise history; our anonymous $100,000 donor; and Herman Miller Cares for matching grant support!
We are pleased that most donors commit for four years and recommit so the program can include an ever-increasing numbers of scholars.
The dream of offering scholarships to motivated students, many the first in their families to attend college, could not happen without the support of our Promise donors:
Dr. John and Monica Arendshort
Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bakker
John and Susan Barwis
Franco and Allesandra Bianchi
Dr. Dan and Kate Bolt
John and Nancy Bolt
Jim and Donna Brooks
Christopher and Lorna Cook
DeNooyer Chevrolet Employees
Robert DeNooyer II and Colette Volkema DeNooyer
Robert J. DeNooyer Sr.
Dominique and Julie DeNooyer
Nicole DeNooyer and Chris Taylor
Chris and Barb DePree
Roger and Janet DeYoung
Fifth Third Bank
Dan and Mary George
Craig and Karen Hall
Richard G. and Ethie Haworth
Don and Jodi Heeringa
Tim and Anne Hemingway
Herman Miller through Herman Miller Cares
Dr. Bill and Dr. Maria Hoekstra
Patrick and Jeanne Kellner
Phil and Lil Koning
Dan and Jan Koster
Mr. and Mrs. David D. Lamberts
Richard and Marcia Lievense
Jim and Sarah Lily
Sam and Jean Martin
Bruce and Carla Masselink
Phillip and Dr. Nancy Miller
Richard and Susan Muzzy
Holly D. Palmer
Perkins Malo Hunter Foundation
Scott and Gina Prince
Rey and Kelli Rivera
David and Katie Shellenbarger
Dick and Nancy Shepherd
Mike and Ann Staed
Robert and Deborah Sterken
Dr. Jim and Dolly Strikwerda
Jim and Carol Stroop
William and Nancy Sturgeon
Linda and Dave Thompson
Rolfe and Stacy Timmerman
Varnum LLP/ Attorneys at Law
Hank and Cora Visscher
Michael and Valerie Volkema
Jan and Carol Wagner
Brian and Colleen Walker
Susan and Joel Wolfe
Holland, Zeeland leaders rally to support Promise Scholarship program, MiBiz, September 15, 2018
Holland/Zeeland Community Foundation to 'Grow the Promise' Scholarship, Holland Sentinel, September 14, 2018
Proud Panther, Holland Sentinel, May 31, 2018. Michael is a 2018 Promise Scholar!
Holland-area Nonprofits Host Events, Campaigns for #GivingTuesday, Holland Sentinel, November 28, 2017
Meet Destination Education's New College Advisers, Holland Sentinel, August 20, 2017. Yadah became a Promise Scholar in 2013, graduated from the University of Michigan in 2017 and has returned to work at Holland High School.
Beating the Odds: Holland High Seniors Excel to be First-Generation College Students, Holland Sentinel, April 20, 2017. Freddie and Marita became Promise Scholars in 2017.
Herman Miller Gives to Promise Scholarship, Holland Sentinel, March 22, 2017
Holland/Zeeland Promise Scholarships Show Promise, Holland Sentinel, August 30, 2012
The Holland/Zeeland Promise Helps Disadvantaged, Dedicated Students, Holland Sentinel, September 7, 2011
Three Holland Seniors Get First 'Promise' Scholarships, The Grand Rapids Press, June 8, 2010
Promise candidates are nominated by their high school or Careerline Tech Center counselors or staff at Hope College Trio's Upward Bound Program, Boys and Girls Club of Greater Holland or Latin Americans United for Progress.
During the second semester of the school year, nominated candidates are contacted by the Foundation's Director of Scholarships and given instructions regarding the application and selection process.
Selection is rigorous and based on a range of factors. High financial need, the motivation to achieve the goal of a college or technical degree and strong recommendations are priorities. In addition, most Promise recipients are the first in their families to go to college.