Workforce Development ‘Ground-Zero’

Today’s scholar will be tomorrow’s community leader, educator, or employer.


At Aksarben, it’s about more than a scholarship, it’s about jobs. Scholarships can change the lives of young students, but we are just as focused on what happens after graduation. Are our Aksarben Scholars finding gainful employment in Nebraska after graduation? That’s our goal.

Aksarben Career Promise

Aksarben Career Promise

...not all careers require a four-year degree.

Partnering with Metropolitan Community College, we aim to change the landscape of education and workforce development across the state.

Students receiving this $2,000 scholarship renewable for up to 2 years must be enrolled in designated high school career academies. Upon completing a degree at MCC, students will be qualified for high-demand, high-paying careers in our state.

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Aksarben Cooperative

Aksarben Cooperative

“The Cooperative Education Program is a great example of a community - businesses, educators, and public servants - rallying together to take responsibility for its future,” - Governor Pete Ricketts.

In partnership with Wayne State College, the cooperative education program is one of several strategies connected to the “Northeast Nebraska Growing Together” initiative that was developed as part of the Aksarben Foundation challenge to address the workforce crisis in Nebraska.

“The next generation of Nebraska leaders won’t appear out of thin air. They’ll need to be mentored, taught, and connected to opportunities where they can contribute their skills. I applaud the Aksarben Foundation, Mike Flood, and Wayne State College for stepping up to envision and fund this program to grow Northeast Nebraska.” – Governor Ricketts

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South Sioux City High School senior Dhugomsa Mohammed knew early on he wanted to be a doctor. Growing up in war-torn Ethiopia, he saw the toll diseases like malaria took and what happened when access to doctors and medicine was scarce. Mohammed came to the United States with his mother and four sisters. “I’d like to go to Africa for a mission and help other doctors and maybe open some medical schools,” Mohammed said. “This scholarship is making it possible for me to go to college. Without it, my dream would have been impossible.” He is attending the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and plans on becoming an infectious disease doctor. Now he runs track and cross country, and even received scholarship offers from some small colleges to run track.

Growing up in Table Rock, Nebraska, Joe Lamb always knew he wanted to teach, but financial fears kept him from feeling confident about realizing that dream. Thanks to the generosity of Aksarben donors, Lamb is set to study elementary education at the University of Nebraska Omaha. “I was in my Spanish class when I received word that I’d been selected for an Aksarben scholarship. I was so excited, I began telling all of my friends! It was important to me to stay in Nebraska and be close to family and friends, but I am so excited to move to Omaha and start this new adventure. I wasn’t sure how I was going to be able to afford college, but thanks to Aksarben, I see possibilities everywhere!”

For Shelby Rising City, Nebraska, student Haley Hanak, finding her voice led her to finding her career path. The Wayne State Collegebound Hanak said she has been singing since she was a little girl and always loved music. A vocal instructor her freshman year encouraged her to sing a solo and she realized she had the voice to do it. Hanak said the Aksarben | Horatio Alger Scholarship meant she can afford college. She lives with her grandparents, one of whom recently retired, and she worried about the loans she would have to take out to attend.

Over $1 million

awarded annually to deserving heartland students in the form of scholarships.