Schulze Foundation Scholars

Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation Scholarship Supports Local Catholic School Students Pursuing Higher Education


Working two jobs, parents making sacrifices, being part of a large or single-parent family — these are just a few of the challenges that students of middle-class families face in their pursuit of higher education. But the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation seeks to change that.

“I thought if there was some way we could make higher education affordable for middle-class and working-class families, we could sow some benefit,” said Dick Schulze, founder of Twin Cities-based Best Buy. Schulze created the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation Scholarship in 2013.

Students are eligible to apply for scholarships if they have attended a Catholic elementary school and if they will graduate from a Catholic high school in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.  In order to apply, students must also meet minimum academic requirements for cumulative grade point average (3.3) and the college readiness assessments of the ACT (scoring 22 or higher) or SAT (scoring 1030 or higher). Once awarded, each of the recipients receives $5,000 per year for four years for full-time enrollment in a college or university, provided they maintain satisfactory academic progress.

Emma Kane, 18, daughter of Mary and Rich Kane, attended Annunciation School in Minneapolis, graduated from DeLaSalle High School and attends Boston College, where she is studying political science. Kane is one of 10 students from Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis to receive a scholarship.

“It means so much,” Kane said. “It’s incredible being able to attend a good school and have help doing that.”

Each student said their Catholic education has prepared them well for college.

“I was able to test into accelerated science courses,” said Claire Shaw, a graduate of Cretin-Derham Hall High School who attended Nativity of Our Lord Catholic School in St. Paul. Shaw, 18, daughter of Katie Shaw, is pursuing biology at St. Olaf College in Northfield. “I’m feeling really prepared.”

Recipients also said they are prepared beyond academics.

“[My Catholic education] helped shaped my world view,” said Ethan Tollefson, 18, who graduated from Totino Grace High School after attending St. Stephen Catholic School in Anoka. He is studying architecture at the University of Kansas. “I learned how to treat others and interact with people. … I learned how to treat different ideas and ages respectfully.”

Kane shares that sentiment.

“[I feel I was able to have a] more fulfilling education,” she said. “I was able to have in-depth, open conversations about religion, faith and cultural differences that you can only do at a Catholic or private school.”

This well-rounded approach to education is exactly what the Foundation seeks in its scholarship recipients. However, far more than what the scholarship requires is what it gives back. For some recipients, it means they can reduce their work hours in order to experience college to its fullest. For others, it means graduating debt free. And for all recipients, it means being able to pursue the college of their choice.

For more information about scholarships from the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation, visit

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