TCF awards one “outstanding kids” award each month of the school year called the High Desert Hero. The High Desert Hero recognizes an outstanding Central Oregon high school senior. Nominations are accepted by the Board of Directors, and one senior is selected as that month’s High Desert Hero. A scholarship program established to recognize the outstanding local youth, each High Desert Hero is honored with a radio profile on Horizon Broadcasting Group’s five radio stations and Bend Broadband television stations through Zolo Media. Additionally, the student is awarded a $250 mini-scholarship. At the end of the school year the nine High Desert Heroes are eligible to compete for the prestigious William K. Worrell $5,000 scholarship funded by Express Employment Professionals and the community. High Desert Heroes and all scholarship winners for the year are honored at the annual “Salute to Heroes” awards dinner held in May.
The High Desert Hero program focuses attention on the student leaders in Central Oregon that exude superlative personal attributes. To be selected students must demonstrate:
- A 3.5 or higher unweighted GPA
- A leadership role in high school extra-curricular activities
- Citizenship through community involvement, respect for others, and recognizable volunteer efforts.