Northwest Missouri State University graduate gives back with scholarship for local students

Judy and Ed Jones. (Photo courtesy of Northwest Missouri State University)

A Northwest Missouri State University graduate has set up a scholarship for agriculture and business students from two local high schools, honoring the education he and his late wife received, which laid the foundation for their prosperous careers.

Students who graduate from North Harrison High School in Eagleville, Missouri, and South Harrison High School in Bethany, Missouri, and then attend Northwest can now apply for the Ed and Judy (Bolar) Jones Scholarship.

The scholarship, valued at $1,000, will be awarded for the first time in the 2024-25 academic year.

Laurie Long, a senior gift planning officer with Northwest’s Office of University Advancement, remarked, “This scholarship celebrates the remarkable life Ed and Judy led. Their legacy will live on as their scholarship supports graduates from their high school alma mater. We deeply appreciate their generous gift and the doors it opens for Northwest students.”

While the scholarship is open to graduates of North or South Harrison high schools, priority will be given to those majoring in Northwest’s School of Agricultural Sciences. Students majoring in the Melvin D. and Valorie G. Booth School of Business may also be considered.

Ed, a North Harrison High School alumnus, was the first from Eagleville to achieve the Eagle Scout rank with the Boy Scouts of America. He graduated in 1956, having served as the FFA chapter president and basketball team captain. By 1960, he had earned his bachelor’s degree in agriculture and business from Northwest. During his time at Northwest, he held various leadership roles, including vice president of the Missouri FFA Association.

Ed recalls cherished memories at Northwest, including learning from esteemed faculty members like R.T. Wright and F.B. Houghton and honing his skills at the University farm.

After graduating, Ed maintained his passion for agriculture, operating a farm with his family until the 1970s. He then began his career with American Family Insurance in Kansas City. In 1962, Ed married Judy, a South Harrison High School graduate. They eventually moved to Phoenix and later Chicago, where Ed retired in 2000 after a 35-year career with American Family Insurance. Judy also had a successful career in the engineering sector.

The couple, who were married for almost six decades, raised two sons. Judy passed away in 2021.

Reflecting on their journey, Ed credits their college education for the opportunities they had. He believes that a college background offers a broader perspective, especially in management roles.

For those interested in contributing to the Ed and Judy (Bolar) Jones Scholarship or other Northwest initiatives, visit this link or contact Northwest’s Office of University Advancement at 660.562.1248.

(Photo courtesy Northwest Missouri State University)