Roscoe Student Wins $3,000 National Small Business Scholarship


Camden Stear

Camden Stear of Roscoe, a chemical engineering major at Missouri University of Science and Technology, has been awarded a $3,000 scholarship from the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE). The NASE awarded only five of these $3,000 scholarships this year, as part of the organization’s NASE Dependent Scholarship program. Camden was also offered a Bausch + Lomb Science Scholarship to the University of Rochester, but chose to attend Missouri S&T instead, where he is already part of the rocket design team there.

Camden's family has lived in Roscoe since 2009. He graduated from Boylan Catholic High School this spring, but because of advanced courses and testing, he entered Missouri S&T as a sophomore. He achieved a perfect math score on the SAT.  A member of the National Honor Society, his weighted GPA at Boylan was more than 4.0. He did get one B in his four-year high school career - but only one. He tied for the school's science scholarship.

Camden's mother Dr. Cindy Stear says the NASE scholarship is "going to really help him a lot." Like many healthcare businesses, her counseling practice, Connections Therapy, was stressed by COVID-19, as its client load was reduced while building maintenance increased.  Dr. Stear had moved her business from Roscoe to Rockton, where they bought a building and rehabbed it - another job Camden now has experience in doing.

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John Hearrell, NASE’s Vice President of Membership and Affiliate Programs, says, "After a yearlong-pandemic, small businesses, like Camden’s family, all face tight budgets and bottom lines that usually don’t include the rising cost of higher education for dependent children.” The NASE calls itself "the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-business community," and offers Growth Grants to its business members as well as more than $2 million in scholarships to dependents over the last twenty-five years.

The award-winning NASE Dependent Scholarship program is open to legal dependents of NASE members, ages 16-24. Consideration is based upon leadership abilities, academic performance, teacher recommendations (Dr. Stear surmises that Camden scored highly here), career and educational background, school and community participation, and financial need.

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