The Gunnar Skog College Scholarship

There are few organized sports leagues where 6 year olds who have barely started kindergarten are participating on the same team with 18 year olds who are ready to leave the nest and start a new life in college. This is one of the special things about the MSL and the Seals - that two age groups who are on the opposite ends of their childhood, have the opportunity to lead cheers together and to cheer each other on. Elder kids are role models for the younger kids, and over time as the youngsters become older - they become role models themselves.

As our swimmers grow up, more and more constraints are put on their time - school work, volunteering, internships, college preparation, college applications, jobs and of course, being with friends. As they become seniors in high school it all seems overwhelming. And yet, somehow, some still find time for the Seals. These swimmers will, amazingly enough, spend their very last Saturdays before they go off to college waiting 6 hours to swim a total of perhaps 5 minutes.

This is the dedication we are honoring with the Gunnar Skog College Scholarship. Available to graduating high school seniors, this scholarship is named after one of the founders of the Strawberry Seals - father to long-time Seals parent and former Seal swimmer - Ingrid Sato (father-in-law to former Seal Matt Sato), grandfather to current and recent Seals Kristin and Marta Sato, and grandfather-in-law to a new generation of Seals - Jessica Bukowski, Sabrina and Sean Haechler, and Georgia and Sydney Smith. Celebrating the diversity of ages that is one of the highlights of being a Seal, it seems only fitting that we name this award after Gunnar Skog, a founder who was there at the beginning of the Strawberry Seals more than 45 years ago, and whose family legacy is still with us to this day.

  • Graduating seniors who have swam the last 3 years with the Seals (swimmer must swim Championships of their graduating year) will receive a $500 college scholarship
  • An additional $100 will be added to the base $500 scholarship for each additional year this swimmer has been on the team, up to 5 years

The total maximum scholarship is $1000

For more information please contact the Seals at [email protected].