Years ago, Ruben Vorster’s grandfather started putting American flags at the headstones of fallen soldiers with the VFW at the Mendon Township Cemetery. These flags help commemorate the sacrifices made to keep us free and provide a dramatic visual message for those who visit. The recent Mendon High School graduate and his family now carry on his grandfather’s tradition.
“It really gives me respect for what these soldiers went through,” says Ruben who earned one of our $1,000 scholarships this year. We love to support youth giving back and who share our desire to make a positive impact within the community.
Ruben, son of Tom and Tanja Jones, will attend Albion College in the fall and plans to pursue a pre-med degree. During high school, he served as leadership ambassador at the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists, and president of the National Honor Society. He volunteered as a youth summer bible school leader and helper and volunteered as a junior pro basketball referee.
He aims to become a physician and while he understands studying medicine will be a difficult challenge, he looks forward to making a difference and be a leader in his community.
One of his passions that he will carry into college is football. During his senior year, he was named All Conference and a 2016 Sturgis Journal Prep Football Dream Team player. For him, the sport is about more than just playing a game. “It has taught me how to be open minded and respect each others differences. It also helped me build strong friendships because we really lean on each other. For me, football doesn’t only build character but it reveals who you are,” said Ruben.
Congratulations Ruben. We wish you the best on your next great adventure.
Click here to watch the video essay he submitted as part of his grant application and stay tuned for updates on next year’s process.