On September 6, a major milestone in the history of the Franklin County Arts Guild was reached: we officially created the Endowment Scholarship Fund of the Franklin County Arts Guild with the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee (CFMT). Members of the board of directors turned over a check for $10,000 to CFMT, beginning the process of making the Guild's scholarship fund self-sustaining for the future. CFMT will also administer the management of the application process.
According to Anna Kathryn Anderson, one of the longest standing members of the Franklin County Arts Guild, this is a 30-year dream in the making.
In 1986, after having been in the Guild for about 15 yrs, Anderson insisted that a scholarship fund be started for the children of the families in Franklin County. "Arts education was just so important to me," said Anderson. She continued, "Art has always been a part of my life, and the children of Franklin County should have the opportunity to have an education in art if they choose."
So in 1986, the first scholarship fund of $200 was given to a student in Franklin County. By 2017, the grant has grown to $2,000 grant, with $1,000 awarded to each of two students.
Last Wednesday, Anderson and the Arts Guild met to celebrate this event and to honor Anderson, celebrating her nomination for the 2017 Governor’s Arts Leadership Award. Pat Cole of the Community Fund of Middle Tennessee was there to accept the check. Cole said they would do the best they could to follow the criteria the Guild has set up. An added benefit of having CFMT manage the application process is that, once a child has an application the pipeline, he or she may also apply for other grants from the Middle Tennessee area.
Anderson added, "I want to say that the people of the Arts Guild have been the best people to work with. I appreciate all that you have given from your heart all these years to help our children. Now I can be assured that this will continue when I'm not here any longer."
Interested applicants among high school seniors who plan to major in art or arts education in college should start the application process at the CFMT website when the process begins in January.
For more information about the Guild, click here or visit our Facebook page. The Guild is the parent organization of the Artisan Depot Gallery & Gift Shop in Cowan.