At the start of 2022, the National Reining Horse Association’s Reining Horse Foundation (RHF) announced a major expansion of its scholarship program, increasing the number of annual scholarships from eight to 10, and increasing the annual funding of those awards from $13,000 to $28,000 per year.
The 10 RHF Scholarships are structured as three at $5,000; three at $2,500; three at $1,500 and one at $1,000. Selection is based on financial need, academic record, involvement in the school and community, a special essay, and references.
2022 Reining Horse Foundation Scholarship Recipients
$5,000 Scholarship Recipients
Bridger Saxton, of Idaho Falls, Idaho
Bridger Saxton trains his two reining horses outside of school hours and plans to pursue a business management degree so he will be prepared to launch a successful training business as an NRHA Professional. A former youth vice president of the Idaho Reining Horse Association, he has volunteered at several IDRHA shows in many roles, including working as a gateman and scribe.
Ariel Wieferich, of Shepherd, Michigan
Ariel Wieferich has some lofty goals – she plans to pursue an aerospace and astronautical engineering degree with hopes of becoming an aerospace engineer. A lifetime member of the Michigan Reining Horse Association, Wieferich has maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout high school, been awarded various National Reining Horse Youth Association (NRHyA) scholarships, and works part-time as a barista at two different coffee shops.
She will attend University of Michigan in the fall.
Kalena Reynolds, of Cave Creek, Arizona
Kalena Reynolds has been accepted to Baylor University and will begin pursuing a degree in journalism this fall. Reynolds, a member of both the Oklahoma Reining Horse and Arizona Reining Horse Associations, was the 2019 Toyon Ranch Rookie of the Year, and currently works as a freelance writer. In her spare time, she helps other kids start their own businesses.
$2,500 Scholarship Recipients
Katie Buckley, of Anna, Texas
Katie Buckley stays busy with reining, FFA, Student Council, sports, and more. She will attend Texas A & M Commerce as a member of both the Stock Horse and Horse Judging teams, so it’s likely that her pace won’t slow down. Buckley, a member of the Southwest Reining Horse Association, plans to complete a degree in kinesiology and sport studies to prepare her for a career as a physical therapist.
Talia Bertrand-Meadows, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Talia Bertrand-Meados plans to major in education, with a focus on French. The Honor Roll student has been a member of the Central Canada Reining Horse Association since 2013 and is active in sports, book club, and theatre. She has been the recipient of several NRHyA Affiliate Regional Championship Scholarships as well as a scholarship for achievements in the Varsity Reining Club.
Bertrand-Meadows has been accepted to the University of Regina to take a combined Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts program for French.
Allyson Nicklous, of Saint Paul, Oregon
With this year’s $2,500 scholarship, Allyson Nicklous is a two-time RHF Scholarship recipient. In high school, she was active in FFA and sports and was a member of the National Honor Society. She has been president and Board of Director for the Oregon Reining Horse youth Association, plans to major in biology with a minor in neuroscience with a pre-med concentration, and has her eyes set on a career as an orthopedic surgeon.
$1,500 Scholarship Recipients
Kinsey Cooper, of Montrose, Georgia
A love of agriculture and horses is leading Kinsey Cooper to pursue a degree in agribusiness at the University of Georgia. She plans to turn that degree into a career as an agriculture attorney. A member of the Heart of Dixie Reining Horse Association, Cooper has been an NRHyA delegate and is currently serving as the Georgia FFA State Secretary.
Julia Fry, of Acampo, California
Having grown up surrounded by the agriculture industry, Julia Fry plans to major in agriculture communications at California Polytechnic State University. A member of the West Coast Reining Horse Association for five years, she has been active in FFA and 4-H, holds a 4.1 GPA, and is also on Lodi High School’s volleyball and drill teams.
Olivia Klug, of Columbus, Nebraska
Olivia Klug has completed her freshman year at Oklahoma State University, where she is majoring in animal science with an eye on becoming a veterinarian. With this $1,500 award, Klug is now a two-time RHF scholarship recipient, having claimed her first in 2021. A member of both the North Central and the Central Plains Reining Horse Associations, Klug served as NRHyA President in 2021.
John McQuay $1,000 Scholarship Recipient
Taylinn Dimmit, of Eugene, Oregon
Taylinn Dimmitt is a member of the Oregon Quarter Horse Youth Association and has served as a Board member, treasurer, and vice president. A member of the National Honor Society and an Honor Roll student, she has earned several college credits already and plans to earn her Associate of Science in dental assisting and pursue a career in dental hygiene.
Expanded biographies on the recipients are available at NRHA.com.
How to Apply for Reining Horse Foundation Scholarships
To apply, students must be members of the National Reining Horse Youth Association for at least 24 months, and be a senior in high school pursuing an undergraduate degree in a two- or four-year institution, trade or technical school. A previous recipient of an RHF Scholarship may reapply for a second scholarship if she or he meets all other criteria.
In addition to the RHF Scholarships, the RHF makes possible another $32,000 per year in NRHA affiliate, Varsity Reining Club and speaking contest scholarships. This expansion makes the total commitment $60,000 per year.
The RHF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and the charitable arm of NRHA. It supports NRHyA, including youth leadership development woven throughout youth programming. Donors are invited to support NRHyA in numerous ways, including individual donations, memorials/honorariums and fundraisers. To learn more, visit reiningfoundation.com.