This generation will carry on tradition of leading the Bakken

Tanner Hopfauf, Dickinson, North Dakota

API Dickinson recently selected and announced its 2017 scholarship recipients and a total of $19,000 was given to 26 young adults.

I am one of the lucky recipients and would like to say thank you to the volunteers of API Dickinson and all those in the oil and gas industry and community who supported the events to raise the scholarship funds.

API Dickinson is not alone in the effort, nor is it the first time I have been fortunate to receive a scholarship from the industry. The oil and gas industry has supported scholarships from API chapters in Williston and Minot, as well as the North Dakota Petroleum Council (which has provided three scholarships to me). Royalty owners have established sizeable scholarship and endowment funds through western North Dakota communities to pay as much as 100 percent of tuition for students from the area. Importantly, other funds are available to students from anywhere who are interested in joining the oil and gas industry.

Even as companies and people manage finances post-boom, they have remained committed to the scholarships that allow young adults to earn an education and, hopefully, find a path back to western North Dakota.

On behalf of myself and all those who have benefited, thank you to all those who have made these scholarship funds available and a success. Our generation will carry on this tradition as we begin to work and lead in the Bakken.

As printed in the Wahpeton Daily News on August 10, 2017.