Mainely Character is accepting applications for 2019 graduates who plan to attend an accredited post-secondary institution.

Scholarships range from $2,500 to $5,000 and will be awarded based on completed applications and personal interviews, according to a news release from the nonprofit.

Many scholarships for high school graduates reward outstanding academic or athletic achievement. Few, however, award students based solely on demonstrable character ― integrity, responsibility, courage and concern for others, according to a news release from the organization.

“The reality we face in Maine is that only half our high school graduates go on to post-secondary education, often for financial reasons. That is one of the lowest rates in the nation and it puts our young people and our state at a disadvantage,” said Curtis Mildner, board chairman of Mainely Character, according to the release. “We realized that Maine students have so much more to offer than what report cards and athletic records can fully reflect, if only they are given the opportunity — that’s where Mainely Character comes in.”

The organization is an all-volunteer, nonprofit Portland organization that provides character-based scholarships to exemplary Maine high school seniors. Since 2000, Mainely Character has awarded more than $100,000 in scholarships, funded entirely through the generous support of private donors and local businesses. As an organization run by volunteer staff, Mainely Character strives to minimize administrative costs in order to maximize scholarship awards.

This year’s scholarships are made possible by the support of Mainely Character volunteers and contributing sponsors Biddeford Savings Bank, Machias Savings Bank, Market Decisions Research and R.M. Davis Inc., according to the release.

The application deadline is March 1. To apply, or for more information, visit

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