Like most everything else in this time of social distancing, the annual awarding of scholarships and other recognition for Rock Island High School students was done online last month.

The Rock Island-Milan Education Foundation (RIMEF), led by executive director Monta Ponsetto, assembled a video presentation to detail and honor the accomplishments of 114 RIHS students, including awarding nearly $90,000 in scholarships. You can see the video at .

The ceremony recognized the top 10 students in each Rocky class, the departmental AAAA winners, and scholarship winners through the RIMEF Austin Academic Achievement Awards. Top Ten Certificates and scholarship award letters were mailed to the recipients’ homes.

Lah Paw was one of the scholarship recipients.

The RIMEF and Edwards Creative of Milan created this video announcing 68 scholarship award winners and recognizing the top-10 students.

The video features introductions from RIMEF board president Pryce T. Boeye, RIHS principal Jeff Whitaker, superintendent Reginald Lawrence and congratulations from teachers, alumni, scholarship benefactors, RIMEF board members, and Mayor Mike Thoms.

Eh Yee was one of the scholarship recipients.

A full list of all our scholarship recipients can be found at under the Scholarships tab.

“We have been increasing the amount we’ve awarded each year as we add more scholarships,” Ponsetto said Monday. “We have at least two more to award next year. We gave out over $300,000 in scholarships, teacher grants, and other support to the district in 2019.”

The foundation – which has about $3 million in assets — was formed in 1986 to enhance academic opportunities for student success in the Rock Island-Milan School District. The foundation manages scholarships for students, distributes grants to teachers in the district for classroom needs, and works to fund programs throughout the District to aid students’ academic success.


Jonathan Turner has been covering the Quad-Cities arts scene for 25 years, first as a reporter with the Dispatch and Rock Island Argus, and then as a reporter with the Quad City Times. Jonathan is also an accomplished actor and musician who has been seen frequently on local theater stages, including the Bucktown Revue and Black Box Theatre.