Scholarship Program

We are proud to announce the Liz Richards Scholarship Fund sponsored by MHEDA is now accepting applications. Liz Richards has dedicated much of her 28-year career to growing the awareness and recognition of the material handling industry within the academic community. Liz has worked tirelessly to ensure our industries are a draw for top talent to sustain and strengthen material handling businesses for the future.

The Liz Richards Scholarship Fund sponsored by MHEDA offers two to three scholarships per year, each worth $5,000. Family and friends of MHEDA member companies are encouraged to apply. The scholarships are awarded in partnership with The Material Handling Education Foundation, Inc. (MHEFI).

The following provides a brief overview of the scholarship program. Please refer to the MHEFI website for complete details.

Important Dates!

Scholarship Opens – November 15, 2023
Scholarship Closes – January 31, 2024
Scholarships Awarded – April 30, 2024

Dates subject to change.

Where to Apply

Click here to apply for a scholarship! Note, applications will open in November 2023.

Target Programs of Study

Undergraduate students from programs listed below that have a focus on material handling, logistics and/or supply chain management are encouraged to apply.

  • Industrial Engineering
  • Industrial Distribution
  • Mechanical & Electrical Engineering
  • Structural Engineering with a focus on cold-formed steel design
  • Engineering Technology
  • Computer Science related to Material Handling & Supply Chain
  • Business & Management related to Material Handling or Supply Chain Management

Student Eligibility*

For the 2024/2025 academic term, the following students are eligible to apply:

  • Undergraduate students pursuing a material handling, logistics or supply chain career enrolled full time at a qualified college or university in a target program (see list above). Undergraduate students may be classified as freshman, sophomore, junior or senior for the Fall 2024 term to be eligible.
  • Enrolled at any non-profit college or university in the United States accredited by the Council for Higher Education.
  • All applicants must be full-time students with a “B” grade point average or above in their major.
  • Applicants must be enrolled in school for the entire academic year (Fall 2024 and Spring 2025) without interruption barring illness, emergency, or military service.
  • Scholarship awards cannot be used for study abroad programs/semesters or summer school.

*Please note, eligibility requirements are subject to change.


The Material Handling Education Foundation, Inc. (MHEFI) is an independent charitable organization that was established in 1976. Since 1976, their programs have supported over 1,000 students and educators seeking pathways to quality educational programs and fulfilling careers. Note: in addition to the MHEDA scholarships, there are several material handling scholarships awarded via MHEFI. 46 scholarships were awarded from MHEFI for the 2022/2023 academic year for a total of $177,100! Complete details and a list of past scholarship winners are available on the MHEFI website!

Scholarship Questions?

For scholarship questions, please contact Donna Varner, Executive Director, at 704-676-1190 or email

Interested in Contributing to the Liz Richards Scholarship Fund?

If you would like to help promote the material handling industry by contributing to the Liz Richards Scholarship Fund, complete the form below. Any amount you contribute is tax deductible and will be appreciated and acknowledged. We are grateful to all MHEDA Members who contribute to this fund each year!

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