The Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Program was founded in 1999 and provides scholarships to graduates of the Witherbee Wilderness Backpacking Program, a continuation program of Camp Bob Waldorf on the Max Straus Campus. The program continues to ensure financial assistance to select motivated graduates who want to pursue post-secondary education. Qualified Witherbee participants who graduate high school and are accepted to an accredited college, university or trade school are then invited to apply.


To be eligible for the Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Program a camper must have:

  • Qualified for and completed at least one Witherbee Wilderness Backpacking trip.
  • Graduated, or be in the process of graduating, from an accredited high school or its equivalent.
  • Decided to pursue post-secondary education through a trade school, community college, four-year university, or other institution of higher education.
  • Demonstrated a need for financial assistance in paying for his/her education.
  • Demonstrated a commitment to community service through past volunteer experience.

Applicants must reapply annually to be considered.

The Application Process

The Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Committee is made up of board members, the CEO, select donors to the Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Fund, and JBBBSLA staff members who carefully screen each candidate during an in-person interview. Scholarships are awarded to candidates based on their financial need, academic rigor and the candidate’s presentation of his or her scholastic goals. The purpose of the Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Program is to continue the investment that JBBBSLA makes in our campers. Scholarships range from $500 to $2,000 and are available to students for their entire course of study while earning their degree.

For more information, please contact Director of Scholarship and Alumni Programs, Carina Garcia at 323-456-1164 or cgarcia@jbbbsla.org.

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