Milton Freant Memorial Bridge to Success Scholarship Endowed at Southeast



Dec. 11, 2006 – The Milton Freant Memorial Bridge to Success Scholarship has been endowed through the Southeast Missouri University Foundation Bridge to Success Award program.

The scholarship was established by Gertrude “Sally” Freant to honor her late husband, Milton Freant. The scholarship was endowed through Mrs. Freant’s $10,000 donation. The Southeast Missouri University Foundation matched 50 percent of the gift with a $5,000 addition to the scholarship.

Milton Freant was a life-long resident of St. Louis and St. Louis County.  He served in the U.S. Army during World War II, spending the majority of his time in the Pacific theatre. Freant later worked until retirement at the former Crown Zellerbach, a paper and material packaging company, and was a proud member of the Teamsters Union.  Mr. and Mrs. Freant had five children.  

Freant’s grandson, Bruce Skinner, director of the Office of Residence Life at Southeast, remembers how his grandfather stressed the importance of education. 

“My grandfather always encouraged me to focus on my education,” said Skinner. “When I first began to attend Southeast, he was one of my greatest sources of support and inspiration.” 

Skinner says the family decided to use the Bridge to Success Program to try and offer something to students who were much like himself. 

“As a first generation college student from a family of limited means, financial aid was critical to my college education,” said Skinner. “This scholarship is being provided in hopes of continuing to offer financial aid to students of limited means who are seeking their college education.”     

The Bridge to Success Award was established by the University’s Board of Regents in 2002 as a need-based grant to help cover unmet costs associated with enrollment at Southeast. The program was initiated after a comprehensive study of student financial aid and scholarships determined that some Missouri residents enrolled at Southeast in fall 2001 had financial need not met by scholarships, grants, wages, loans or family contributions.

Students receiving Bridge to Success awards are given varying award amounts ranging from $150 to $1,000 a year.  The grants require no repayment. Each student’s award is determined by subtracting the Expected Family Contribution calculated on the Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA) and other financial aid from an average cost of attendance that includes fees, textbook rental and a room and board allowance.  


A state-assisted institution, Southeast Missouri State University receives only a portion of its funding from state revenue, tuition and auxiliaries. The remainder is raised by the Southeast Missouri University Foundation in the form of private gifts by alumni and friends who believe in bringing students a high-quality education that ensures students experience success in our global society. 

Since its founding in 1983, the University Foundation has worked diligently to raise and manage funds for the betterment of Southeast Missouri State University and its students. The funds support scholarships, financial aid, faculty advancement, technological upgrades and facility improvements.

For more information on the Foundation and ways to support Southeast, visit