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Thillen Education Foundation Awards $182,000 to 2024 Graduates of Greene County High School

At Honors Night on May 20, 2024, 100% of the students participating in the career coaching program at Greene County High School graduated and received a share of $182,000 in earned financial assistance, awarded by the Thillen Education Foundation (TEF). There were 83 participants in the program. “Students earned post graduate financial commitments throughout high school for academic, community service and professional milestones achieved,” announced Dave Thillen, founder. “We are so honored to have presented these students with real funds to continue their education, advance their professional skills, launch skilled trade careers or begin military service.”

headshots of students, their universities, and scholarship awards

headshots of students, their universities, and scholarship awards

For the class of 2024, TEF recruited more than 120 volunteer career coaches who dedicated countless hours to conducting regular coaching and life planning sessions with students throughout their years of high school. Offering students on-going access to business professionals and educators along with financial incentives to excel has dramatically increased scholastic and graduation performance. Dave Thillen adds, “Our coaches, school staff, and donors are very pleased with the progress made by the amazing students in our career coaching program.”

Looking Ahead to Future Graduating Classes – and More Earned Financial Awards

When the Thillen Education Foundation and Greene College Career Academy at Greene County High School first partnered in 2018, they anticipated the day when students would be financially rewarded for their dedication and forward life planning. Dave Thillen recently remarked, “We are fortunate to have had direct one-on-one involvement in the lives of hundreds of students, with hundreds more in line to experience the same post-graduation recognition and financial assistance in the years ahead.”

Each year, the program grows to include more community members meaningfully interacting with individual students. When school starts again in the fall, a total of 120 volunteer career coaches will work with over 400 students who attend GCHS. Counting the graduates in the classes of 2022, 2023 and 2024 along with the career coaches who worked with them, we are up to over 600 students who participated in the career coaching program and 180 volunteer career coaches.

Over the course of the past three full years the TEF program has been in place, the organization has steadily increased its annual scholarship funds and has now awarded students close to $500,000 in post-graduate assistance.

“Our plan is to continue the program in perpetuity with similar or greater financial assistance for each graduating class,” Thillen says. “If our community has taught us anything it’s that we have only just begun to help realize the ambitions and dreams for so many deserving young people at Greene County High School.”

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The Thillen Education Foundation, Inc. is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit proving that career coaching and earned financial assistance combined with the skills-based learning at Greene College and Career Academy at Greene County High School produces productive citizens.

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