Kauffman earns scholarship

Knowlton Scholarship aids first-year student’s plans

Shelbi Kauffman is pursuing ambitious plans at Bluffton University with the help of a scholarship aimed at students from her home county.

The first-year student from Bellefontaine is majoring in marketing and business administration at Bluffton, where she is the second recipient of the Austin E. Knowlton Memorial Scholarship.

Established through the Cincinnati-based Austin E. Knowlton Foundation, the renewable scholarship gives first preference to students interested in a math or related major and special consideration to residents of Logan County. Knowlton, a renowned architect who died in 2003, was raised in Bellefontaine.

Kauffman is a 2013 Bellefontaine High School graduate whose future goals include working in international business or marketing. She is a member of Oak Grove Mennonite Church, West Liberty, and the Bluffton volleyball team.

“Receiving the Knowlton Scholarship means a lot to me,” she noted. “Any help makes going to college less stressful.”

Kassandra Chiles, a 2013 Bluffton graduate in mathematics, received the first Knowlton Scholarship at the university last year. If there are no applicants from Logan County, the scholarship is to go to an Ohio resident, with preference for a freshman applicant.

Knowlton was a 1931 graduate of The Ohio State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering. He was the owner of the Knowlton Construction Co., established in Bellefontaine in 1937. In his lifetime, he designed more than 600 buildings, including more than 160 college and university buildings across Ohio, along with many schools, hospitals, and commercial and government structures.

Knowlton was widely recognized for his philanthropic leadership, including a special interest in supporting education. The Ohio State School of Architecture is named in his honor, and the foundation that he established provided funding for the Knowlton Library in Logan County. Also an avid sportsman, Knowlton was a founding partner and chairman of the board of the Cincinnati Bengals and a minority owner of the Cincinnati Reds.

The Knowlton Foundation continues to carry on his interest in supporting higher education.