This page is a “work in progress.”

FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THE MILWAUKEE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA HOLIDAY POPS CONCERT OR THE 5K RUN/WALK: “Not Just a Walk in the Park” click on one of the links at the very top of this page.



The purpose of COLUMNS is to provide both academic and technical scholarships to graduates of West Bend East and West Bend West High Schools as they advance their education.  There are two types of scholarships: COLUMNS Scholarships and COLUMNS-administered Scholarships.  COLUMNS administers scholarships for individuals, organizations, and other foundations.  Members of the COLUMNS scholarship committee interview scholarship applicants in March of the year.  Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic standing; financial need; evidence of character, leadership, and determination; and meeting the specific requirements of the individual donor.



In 1926 West Bend High School alumni contributed to a fund used for $50 book awards given to outstanding graduates.   The West Bend High School Alumni Foundation was established in 1945 and solicited funds for  book awards and for a broader base of financial support.  In 1961 the foundation obtained tax-exempt status and began the scholarship and aid program with awards totaling $600.  The foundation merged with the West Bend Scholarship Fund, Inc. in 1972 and COLUMNS was born.  That year they distributed $16,550 in scholarships.  Since 2008 COLUMNS has awarded close to or over $200,000 each year in scholarships, with 2013 seeing scholarships totaling $262,800 awarded to graduating seniors.



COLUMNS is headed by a board of directors, which consists of 21 members that meet four times a year: February, May, September, and November.  The general membership consists of over 65 members that attend the annual meeting every year in November.  There are 7 permanent committees and two ad-hoc committees that all meet on an as-need basis throughout the year.



  • All COLUMNS members are expected to serve on one or more of the many COLUMNS committees to increase fund-raising resources.
  • All COLUMNS members are required to sell a minimum of 5 of the distributed MSO Holiday Pops Concert tickets at a cost of $20.00 each, or make a donation of $100 or more.
  • All COLUMNS members are expected to attend the Annual Meeting in November.
  • All COLUMNS members are expected to act as liaisons to the community promoting COLUMNS and its ideals.



There are two fund-raisers which are held each year: the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Holiday Pops Concert in early December and the 5K Run/Walk: “Not Just a Walk in the Park” held in the evening of the first Thursday of August.



The MSO Holiday Pops Concert is held in early December in the West Bend High Schools’ auditorium and is underwritten by local business, individuals, or foundations.  All proceeds from ticket sales are used for COLUMNS Scholarships.  The first benefit concert was underwritten by B.C. Ziegler and Company in 1971.


THE 5K RUN/WALK: “Not Just a Walk in the Park”

COLUMNS’ second fund-raiser is a 5K run/walk held in the evening of the first Thursday in August.  Local individuals, businesses, and foundations sponsor the run/walk, with all proceeds going to COLUMNS Scholarships.  The inaugural event was held on August 1, 2013 and was deemed a success by the runners, walkers, sponsors, and committee members!



Each year the fourth and fifth graders of the public and parochial schools in West Bend are given the opportunity to attend the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s Youth Concert held at the West Bend High Schools’ auditorium.  This has always been a rewarding experience for the children.  The MSO will continue to entertain the fourth and fifth graders for years to come through the generosity of the Schlegel Foundation.



  • Finance and Investment Committee
  • Scholarship Committee
  • Membership Development Committee
  • Public Relations Committee
  • Symphony Committee
  • 5K Run/Walk Committee
  • Youth Concert Committee
  • Nominating Committee (Ad hoc)