Ancestry.com Operations Inc. (“Ancestry®”) has established the AncestryProGenealogists® Scholarship Program to foster and support professional genealogists in their ongoing development efforts.

AncestryProGenealogists® Scholarship Program

Ancestry.com Operations Inc. (“Ancestry”) has established the AncestryProGenealogists® Scholarship Program to foster and support professional genealogists in their ongoing development efforts. The scholarships, being awarded this year, will be awarded to four aspiring or practicing professional genealogists and cover certain expenses of attending one of four U.S.-based genealogical institutes.

Award

The AncestryProGenealogists® Scholarship Program will provide four scholarships that will cover tuition, round-trip economy travel (airfare, train, or bus), and hotel expenses for one individual each to attend one of the four institutes listed below, not to exceed $2,000 per selected recipient. The scholarships will be awarded to qualified applicants who demonstrate a commitment to genealogy as a profession, a desire for professional development, and the ability to communicate that commitment in writing.

Institutes

  • Midwest African American Genealogy Institute (MAAGI), Ft. Wayne, Indiana, July 6-8, 2021
  • Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP), June 20-25, 2021 OR July 11-16, 2021
  • Institute on Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR), July 25-30, 2021
  • Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), Salt Lake City, UT, January 9-14, 2022 OR SLIG Academy for Professionals January 16-21, 2022.

 

Abbreviated Rules

Applicants are asked to submit the following via the on-line application:

  1. Name
  2. Mailing Address
  3. E-mail Address
  4. Phone Number
  5. Resume: Your current resume, irrespective of any genealogical experience.

Institute Preference: Rank the four U.S.-based genealogical institutes based on your preference for attendance, from highest (1) to lowest (4): GRIP, IGHR, MAAGI, or SLIG. For GRIP, IGHR, MAAGI and SLIG, specify which course you would like to take.

  1. Essay:
  • Describe your genealogy career up to this point, where you see yourself in the future as a professional genealogist, and how attending your top-choice institute will benefit your career.
  • Essay must be no less than 500 and no more than 700 words.
  • Essays submitted electronically must be submitted as a .pdf or .doc

 

Entrants also have to option to send the aforementioned items by mail to:

Scholarship Program
C/O AncestryProGenealogists®
324 S. State St., Suite 100
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

Applications may be submitted on or after October 1, 2020. Electronic entries must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, November 30, 2020. Mailed items must be postmarked by November 30, 2020 and received no later than December 5, 2020. A panel of AncestryProGenealogists® professionals will review and select by January 31, 2021, four winning essays from the pool of eligible entries. The Grand Prize winner will receive tuition to his or her first-choice institute, plus travel and hotel costs, up to a maximum of $2,000. The Second, Third, and Fourth Prize winners will receive tuition, plus travel and hotel costs, up to $2,000 for each awardee, to their first-choice institute, unless already chosen by a higher place awardee, in which case the next applicable and available choice will apply. The judges’ decisions with respect to the selection of the awardees and the interpretation of the Official Rules will be final. The names of the four selected recipients will be announced on www.progenealogists.com/scholarship by March 1, 2021. Official Rules available here.

By submitting your application, including any personal information contained therein, you attest that the information provided is true and correct and that the essay is original work by you. You also agree to be bound by the Official Rules and consent to the collection and use of your personal information in accordance with Ancestry’s Privacy Statement, available here, which provides in part that Ancestry or AncestryProGenealogists® may contact you via the information you’ve provided for other future opportunities sponsored by Ancestry or AncestryProGenealogists®. Please see the Official Rules before submitting your application.

Please direct inquires to scholarships@ancestry.com.

Application Address

Send electronic applications to scholarships@ancestry.com.

Send printed applications to:

Scholarship Program
C/O AncestryProGenealogists®
324 S. State St., Suite 100
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

Application Timeline

Applications due November 30, 2020.

Recipients notified on or before January 31, 2021.

Announcements made by March 1, 2021.

Qualifications and Limitations:

  • Applicants must be aspiring or practicing professional genealogists.
  • Applicants must be at least the age of majority in their state of residence at time of entry.
  • Applicants must be residents of the 50 United States, and Washington D.C. Void where prohibited by law, and void for residents of all U.S. overseas territories, commonwealths, possessions, and military locations.
  • Applicants may submit only one application for this year’s contest.
  • Winning applicants must know and have all pre-requisites for a course. Please see the applicable institute’s website for information on courses and pre-requisites.
  • Scholarship is not available to employees of Ancestry, Alliance Sweepstakes, or any of their respective affiliated companies, their immediate family members or members of their households.

 

Recipient Responsibilities:

  • Recipients, upon notification of scholarship award, must provide AncestryProGenealogists a current photograph and short biographical sketch (maximum 100 words) for publicity purposes.
  • To receive an award, recipients must sign and return an Affidavit of Eligibility, Release and Indemnification, and Publicity Release.
  • Recipients are asked, upon completion of the institute, to provide AncestryProGenealogists a description of their institute experience (general information, key learnings, notable experiences, etc.), of 100 to 250 words, for publicity purposes.
  • Any scholarship funds received under this program are not excludable from a recipient’s income. Accordingly, recipients are responsible for reporting and paying all applicable local, state, and/or federal income taxes. Winners will receive a Form 1099 for the applicable prize amount.

 


2020 Winners

 

First Place

Kristin Wenger, of Lititz, PA - SLIG Academy January 2021. Kristin Wenger, founder of Roots & Wings Research, LLC, is passionate about giving others the gift of experiencing fulfillment and inspiration through discovering, preserving, and sharing their family histories. A lifelong Lancaster County resident, she specializes in Pennsylvania research, particularly Anabaptists and Moravians. As a teacher and librarian for nearly two decades, Kristin loves to provide both individual coaching and engaging group instruction. She volunteers as the in-house genealogist for the Lititz Historical Foundation, serves on the Lititz Public Library Board, and is involved in teaching and music ministries at her church. Kristin will attend SLIG Academy for Professionals in 2021 as her next step toward earning the CG and CGL credentials.

Second Place

Adina Newman of Sharon, Massachusetts – IGHR summer 2020. Adina Newman will attend the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) in Athens, Georgia, this summer to take the course, “Advanced Methodology and Evidence Analysis.” As the founder of My Family Genie, Adina assists clients with their family research and blogs about her own family history. She has a doctorate in educational leadership and has completed the Boston University Certificate in Genealogical Research and the SLIG Virtual All-DNA Advanced Practicum. She also volunteers as a Facebook moderator for a Jewish genetic genealogy group and is the Social Media Coordinator for NextGen Genealogy Network. She aspires to become a credentialed genealogist and genealogy educator, presenting and writing to educate others and help them with their own genealogy goals.

Third Place

Franchesca Werden of Cathedral City, CA – GRIP summer 2020. Franchesca Werden has been working as a professional genealogist for the past three years, specializing in forensic genealogy and Italian genealogical research. She holds a B.S. from Boston University in Broadcasting and Film and is a graduate of B.U.'s Certificate in Genealogical Research program. She is currently on the teaching team for both of the Boston University genealogy courses. Franchesca sits on the board of DNA Doe, a non-profit that uses genetic genealogy to identify John and Jane Does. She is committed to continuing education and professional development. Franchesca is currently completing the ProGen Study Group and has attended both GRIP and SLIG in the past. Her goal is to achieve Certification through the Board for Certification of Genealogists so that she can pursue a career in military repatriation.

Fourth Place

Katherine Huffman of St, Peters, MO – GenFed summer 2020. Katherine Huffman of St. Peters, Missouri, is the owner of her own genealogy business and hopes to apply for certification with the Board for Certification of Genealogists within the next two years. She earned her B.A. in anthropology from the University of Missouri in 2013 and her certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University in 2019. In her spare time, Katherine is an active member of her local DAR chapter, serves as an ambassador for her local tourism bureau, and is currently writing a book about her paternal ancestry.

Fifth Place

Suzanne Myers of Phoenix, AZ – MAAGI summer 2020. Suzanne Kelting Myers, D.O. has been been involved in her family's genealogical research since the 1980's but began again in earnest preparing for a trip to Ireland ten years ago. She has since located and visited ancestral homes for her Irish, Bohemian and Jewish Bavarian ancestors. Stateside, her interests include everything Old West where rustlers, wranglers, and ruffians braved the frontier and the Great Plains where farms were carved out of grassland and homes were built of sod. Her education in anthropology, educational theory and medicine provide her a unique approach to genealogical research and interpretation. Her business, Expedition Genealogy, founded in 2017, does traditional family history, DNA analysis, unknown heir services, adoption reconciliation and mentoring of family historians. She serves as editor for Tidbits, the monthly newsletter for West Valley Genealogical Society of Youngtown, Arizona, and is actively involved in transcribing burial card data for the San Francisco Bay Are Jewish Genealogical Society. When not totally immersed in genealogy, Suzanne enjoys distance running, dog agility, sewing and writing.

 


2019 Winners

 

First Place

Linda Tseitlin of Peabody, Massachusetts, is one of our winners of this year's AncestryProGenealogists™ institute scholarships. Linda will attend the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) in Athens, Georgia, this summer to take the course "DNA as Genealogical Evidence." Linda became interested in genealogy more than 35 years ago, and has been pursuing in-depth education with an eye to making it her career for the past couple of years. She has completed the Boston University Certificate Program, the ProGen Study Group, and has attended the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP). Her next goal is to apply for the Certified Genealogist(R) credential through the Board for Certification of Genealogists. Congratulations, Linda!

Second Place

Lynn Tenney of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, is one of our winners of this year's AncestryProGenealogists™ genealogical institute scholarships. Lynn, who has been interested in tracing family history for more than 30 years, hopes to teach genealogy to others through community education, local societies, and conferences. She also hopes to attain the Certified Genealogist(R) and Certified Genealogical Lectruer(SM) credentials. Lynn will attend the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) this summer and take Blaine Bettinger's "Advanced DNA Evidence" course.

Third Place

Amber Oldenburg of Indianapolis, Indiana, is one of our AncestryProGenealogists™ institute scholarship winners. She will attend the "Introduction to Genetic Genealogy" track at next year's Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) in January 2020. Amber recently earned her associate's degree in Family History from Brigham Young University-Idaho. She lectures and volunteers locally for genealogical organizations and is on the board of the Indiana chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She plans to continue to work with clients and educate the public, and she hopes to get on the speaking circuit at national conferences. She also has a goal of earning the Certified Genealogist(R) credential through the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG).

Fourth Place

Donna Weathers of Norcross, Georgia, is one of our AncestryProGenealogists™ institute scholarship winners. Donna's attendance at the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records (Gen-Fed) in Washington, D.C., will figure into her five-year education plan preparing her to seek the Certified Genealogist(R) credential through the Board for Certification of Genealogists. Donna is an AncestryProGenealogists™ contractor and a genealogy trip planner. She enjoys genealogical lecturing and hopes to do more of it in the future. Her special research interest is the U.S. Lifesaving Service.


2018 Winners

 

First Place

Julie Cahill Tarr will be attending the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Julie is a professional genealogist, who provides research, writing, editing, and graphic design services to help clients discover and share their family history. An award-winning author, she also educates others on genealogy research techniques and methods by writing articles, guides, and course materials. Julie currently serves as the managing editor of FORUM, a quarterly magazine of the Federation of Genealogical Societies. Participating in the course You Be the Judge: A Practicum Using Standards to Evaluate Genealogical Work at GRIP will help Julie excel at her work as an editor, writer, and researcher.

Second Place

Laura Jones will be attending the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records in Washington, D.C. As a former Civil War reenactor, Laura Jones gained a deep appreciation for family lore, and while working towards her B.A. in history, she became interested in learning about her colonial ancestors.  For more than 20 years, Laura researched her own ancestors and those of many friends.  As her passion for genealogy grew, she expanded her expertise through webinars, conferences, and seminars.  In 2015, Laura founded Blue Tree Legacy to help clients discover their own lost history.  Seeing the wonder in her clients’ eyes when they discover an ancestor is a delight that never grows old.

Third Place

Peg A. Ivanyo will be attending the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research in Athens, Georgia. Peg is a meeting planner by trade and a genealogist, family historian by passion. She presently works as the director of the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). She has previously served as a member of the Utah Genealogical Association Board of Directors, administrator of the Eastern European Family History Conference, member of the Springville Family History Center Training committee, and spent eight years teaching classes and consulting with local church members.

Fourth Place

Leah Larkin will be attending the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy in Salt Lake City, Utah. Leah Larkin is originally from southern Louisiana, where she grew up in the heart of Cajun country, steeped in culture and history.  She earned her Ph.D. in biology from the University of Texas at Austin, where she used DNA to study how species are related. After working in both academia and scientific publishing, she turned her skills to solving unknown parentage cases using DNA. She currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and two children.

 


2017 Winners

 

First Place

Jan Joyce Ahrens of Los Altos Hills, California, will be attending the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Dr. Ahrens has researched her personal genealogy since 1998 focusing on the geographies of Ohio, Pennsylvania, England, and Norway. She is pursuing her genealogy education professionally to teach and write.

Second Place

Jennifer Stone Randolph of Hanover, New Hampshire, will be attending the Genealogical Institute on Federal Records in Washington, D.C. Ms. Randolph is the managing genealogist for Touchstone Genealogical Services, based in New Hampshire. Jennifer has over ten years’ experience in the field.

Third Place

Denyce Porter Peyton of Cincinnati, Ohio, will be attending the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research in Athens, Georgia. Ms. Peyton has engaged in genealogical research since 1994, working as a professional researcher since 2004. She serves a diverse clientele, including a specialty in African American research. Her geographic focus areas include Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, and the southeastern states.

Fourth Place

Kristin Harms of Alpharetta, Georgia, will be attending the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy in Salt Lake City, Utah. Ms. Harms is a professional genealogist based just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. She has colonial roots in Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts, and immigrant ancestors from Germany, Switzerland, England, Scotland, and Ireland. She has been chasing the evidence of her ancestors’ lives for over 15 years.

 

 

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