Rhett Bourne of San Juan Capistrano and Miles Riehle of Laguna Beach were announced Thursday as Orange County winners of 2021 Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) scholarships.
Riehle and Bourne were among 11 students from across Southern California who will receive $4,000 each in financial support.
The SCAG scholarship program, now in its 11th year, is intended to provide financial support to a select group of high school and community college students who have expressed interest in urban planning and public policy as part of their long-term career goals. The scholarship winners were announced at SCAG’s Regional Council meeting.
“We’re honored to have the opportunity to help these students in the next stage of their academic journeys. They are remarkable young adults and future leaders for our region,” said Clint Lorimore, SCAG President, an Eastvale City Councilmember and member of the SCAG Scholarship Committee.
As part of the application process, students were required to submit a completed application form; a minimum 500-word essay, two letters of recommendation and a current academic transcript.
Bourne graduates Thursday from San Juan Hills High School and will attend Brigham Young University, majoring in civil engineering.
“My dad was our city’s mayor, and I assisted in his election campaign, distributing signs and flyers, canvassing neighborhoods, and attending campaign events. During his time in office, I have been able to discuss proposed public works projects with him, watching these move from ideas to reality,” Bourne wrote. “My interest in the creative process of urban planning and development has only grown as I’ve learned enough to actively participate.”
Riehle graduates next week from Laguna Beach High School and will attend the University of California, Davis, majoring in environmental policy analysis and planning. His scholarship was funded through a partnership with the California Transportation Foundation.
“Throughout my educational journey and beyond, I’m committed to creating and fighting for systemic change that will result in better, more sustainable, and more equitable solutions for all,” Riehle wrote.
In addition to Lorimore, this year’s SCAG Scholarship Committee was comprised of 15 Regional Council members and three representatives from education and business. On the committee from Orange County were: Peggy Huang, representing the Transportation Corridor Agencies; and Tim Shaw, representing the Orange County Transportation Authority.