Both SWANA National and the Badger Chapter have scholarship programs in place to help achieve the organization’s strategic goal of promoting industry education.  The Chapter typically awards up to $6,000 in scholarships each year and up to an additional $25,000 is awarded through the national program.  An application for the Badger Chapter scholarship program automatically serves as a student’s application for the National scholarship program and the deadline for submittal is May 1 of each year.  See AWARDS & SCHOLARSHIPS page for details. 

2021 SWANA Badger Chapter Scholarship Award Recipients
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  • University of Wisconsin - Platteville (student member)

  • Victoria Chanez  is an environmental engineering major with a chemistry minor at the University of Wisconsin Platteville. She is involved with the Society of Women Engineers and the Pioneer Sportsman’s Club. She will also be continuing her research assistant position where her team and she investigate various types of bentonite clay liners as a potential nuclear waste container and barrier. Victoria is originally from Oshkosh, WI. She chose environmental engineering because of the conservation club she is a member of near her hometown. They raise pheasants and do other environmentally sustainable acts. She is looking forward to starting her career after completing her undergraduate degree in May 2022. She hopes to start a career that allows her to make a positive difference in the remediation field while improving sustainability efforts.

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  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (student member)

  • Colton will be attending the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities this fall (2021) as an incoming freshman, where he will be pursuing a finance or economics degree. Also, he plans to work on a minor in environmental studies. Colton has worked in the Solid Waste Industry his entire life. His journey began at 7 Rivers Recycling where he managed his own team to learn and develop more efficient processing techniques. After that, he transferred over to Hilltopper Refuse and Recycling and worked in the Material Recovery Facility (MRF). In the MRF Colton spent most of his time sorting various materials. Currently, he still works for Hilltopper Refuse & Recycling, but recently his roles have adjusted. Now he spends a lot of his time setting up new accounts, entering data, and assisting in special events. Colton continues to practice and teach the motto, "Think Global, Act Local".



  • University of Wisconsin – Madison (student member)

  • Sydney Klinzing is an undergraduate senior at the University of Wisconsin Madison pursuing a degree in Geological Engineering, a second degree in Geoscience and Geophysics and a certificate in Engineering for Energy Sustainability. She became interested in solid waste management after hearing a guest lecturer speak on harnessing energy through solid waste management practices. She joined the SWANA Badger Chapter in 2020 to engage more in the industry and took a course on renewable energy systems to learn academic side of solid waste management. Sydney’s hobbies include rock climbing, making pottery, and playing ultimate frisbee. 

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ALEX THOMAS, The Brenda Lee Quinnell Rising Leader Scholarship Recipient

  • University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point  (student member)

  • A Wisconsin native, Alex completed his undergraduate degrees in Biology and Waste Resources before working in Waste Management and Planning in Eastern Washington. In early 2020, Alex started as a Graduate Research Assistant position at the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point under the Soils and Waste Resources department researching the affects composting can have on infectious diseases like Chronic Wasting Disease and E. coli. Alex also works as a part-time operator at Marathon County Solid Waste and as the Field Supervisor for the Compost Manufacturing Alliance. Alex serves as the SWANA Badger Chapter Student Director and on the SWANA National’s Young Professionals Steering Committee. He is glad to be a part of the solid waste industry and enjoys getting to work with wide variety of people in the industry.

Additional Scholarship Recipient: Nicholas Rabe