Three students receive Woodwork Institute scholarships
Allison Van Houten WI Scholarship 2022
Claire Koettker 2022 Woodwork Institute Scholarship
Nathan Dean Minuth 2022 Woodwork Institute Sholarship
Allison Van Houten   Claire Koettker Nathan Dean Minuth

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Woodwork Institute C.E. Bernhauer Jr. Scholarship Foundation recently awarded scholarships to help three students prepare for careers in the architectural woodwork industry.

The trio of 2022 recipients include:

Allison Van Houten has been a speech-language pathologist for Detroit Public Schools for the past four years. After much reflection and 10 years of refinishing furniture as a hobby, she decided to embark on a new career in woodworking. She is the first woman to pursue the Woodwork Manufacturing Specialist apprenticeship and certification program registered through the U.S. Department of Labor. She will complete a four-year apprenticeship at Burke Architectural Millwork in Livonia, Mich,, while also completing coursework at Schoolcraft College.

Claire Koettker is pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in architectural manufacturing management and technology at Pittsburg State University in Kansas. She is an active member of the Society of Architectural Woodworkers and serves as its event planner. She credits her high school woodworking classes and her participation in the national student organization, SkillsUSA, with fueling her passion for woodworking.

Nathan Dean Minuth is studying architectural manufacturing management and technology at Pittsburg State University in Kansas. He earned the program’s Outstanding Student of the Year Award in 2022 and has held leadership positions at the Society of Architectural Woodworkers. Nathan began woodworking at a young age with his dad who is a cabinet maker. After graduation, he plans to work in the custom side of the industry.

Woodwork Institute C.E. Bernhauer Jr. Scholarships are open to individuals interested in pursuing or furthering a career in the architectural millwork industry. Application may be made by students entering or continuing enrollment in a university, state or private college, community college, or trade school, or from individuals already working in the industry.

To qualify applicants must:

  • Be in their senior year of high school, or
  • Be employed and maintain employment during the educational period, or
  • Be currently enrolled in a state college/university, private or community college, or a trade school.

The deadline to apply for the 2023-2024 school year is April 28. A new online application will be posted soon.

Learn more about the scholarship program.


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Rich Christianson | President/Owner/C-Level

Rich Christianson is the owner of Richson Media LLC, a Chicago-based communications firm focused on the industrial woodworking sector. Rich is the former long-time editorial director and associate publisher of Woodworking Network. During his nearly 35-year career, Rich has toured more than 250 woodworking operations throughout North America, Europe and Asia and has written extensively on woodworking technology, design and supply trends. He has also directed and promoted dozens of woodworking trade shows, conferences and seminars including the Cabinets & Closets Conference & Expo and the Woodworking Machinery & Supply Conference & Expo, Canada’s largest woodworking show.