Pair of Waukon High School graduates awarded scholarships from P.E.O.

Graduates of Waukon High School awarded P.E.O. Scholarships ... A pair of Waukon High School graduates were awarded scholarships by Chapter EK of the Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.) Sisterhood at the annual Senior Awards Night held in May at Waukon High School. Pictured in each photo with P.E.O. Chapter EK members Joan Schwartz (left) and Betty Steege (right) are Olivia Marti (top photo), recipient of the $2,500 STAR Scholarship, and Breckan Stewart (bottom photo), recipient of the $500 Chapter EK Scholarship. Submitted photos.

A pair of young ladies from the 2024 graduating class of Waukon High School were awarded scholarships from the P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization) Sisterhood. The scholarships were distributed at the school’s annual Senior Awards Night held in May.

Olivia Marti was selected to receive a $2,500 STAR Scholarship from the P.E.O. Sisterhood. She was recommended by P.E.O. Chapter EK, which has been a part of the Waukon community since it was organized in 1914.

The P.E.O. STAR Scholarship was established in 2009 to provide scholarships for exceptional women in their final year of high school to attend an accredited postsecondary educational institution in the U.S. or Canada in the next academic year. The competitive STAR Scholarship is for women who exhibit excellence in leadership, academics, extracurricular activities, community service and potential for future success.

Marti will attend Iowa State University in Ames in the fall to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree. Her goal is to make a positive, long-lasting impact on agriculture through better agronomy.

Breckan Stewart is the recipient of a $500 Chapter EK scholarship. She will attend Clarke College in Dubuque to pursue a degree in Nursing.

P.E.O. has been celebrating women by helping them reach for the stars for more than 155 years. Since its inception in 1869, the nonprofit organization has helped more than 125,000 women pursue educational goals by providing approximately $432 million in grants, scholarships, awards, and loans.

The Sisterhood also owns and supports Cottey College. Through membership, the P.E.O. Sisterhood has brought together more than half a million women in the United States and Canada who are passionate about helping women advance through education while supporting and motivating them. In addition to the educational philanthropies, the P.E.O. Sisterhood provides a framework of support and community for all members.

What started with a bond of friendship among seven women in Mount Pleasant is now one of the oldest women’s organizations in North America with close to 5,500 chapters. To learn more about P.E.O., its powerful educational philanthropies and see stories of women who have benefited from the programs, visit