Montana Trappers Association

Working Today For a Tomorrow in Trapping.
Furbearers Are A Natural Renewable Resource.

MTA Memorial Scholarship

In Memory of Doug Slifka, Fuller Laugeman and Pat Vanek

The Montana Trappers Association offers three (3) $500 scholarships for any MTA member or member's sibling who intends to further their education at any college or university of their choice. These scholarships are awarded annually and membership in the MTA MUST be current.


Scholarship applications can be downloaded at the link below. Scholarships will be awarded during the yearly Rendezvous in September. Members and their children are encouraged to contact their Director, Officer or Committee member for further information or assistance. Those MTA members out of state and their families are eligible to apply as well as in state.


  • Applicants must be between the ages of 15 - 25

  • Scholarship for undergraduate study in any college or university.

  • High School or College Transcript must be included with application.

  • Student involvement in activities to include: MTA programs, trapping, school programs, community service.

  • Applicants must submit a type written essay or short story on trapping or conservation. The awarded scholarship applicant’s essay will be published in the MTA newsletter.

  • Two (2) Letters of Recommendation by current MTA members, MTA District Director, Sub-Directors, from the district where applicant resides. Teachers, or other pertinent individuals, must be included with application.

  • Planned course of study: i.e. Furbearer or Wildlife Management, Natural Resources, or other life science major preferred. Other majors will be considered.

  • Applicants attitude and intent, to be determined by application responses or committee interview.

  • Applicant must be a minor dependent of a member in good standing of the MTA, or a member of the association for one (1) year prior to applying for a scholarship.

  • All applications must be type written.

  • Incomplete applications will not be considered.


Applications must be completed and returned by June 1 of the current year to:

MTA Scholarship Committee
C/O Gary VanHaele
P O Box 264
Hysham, MT 59038


  Download Scholarship Application

Fillable Form Type Document

Did You Know?

Jim Bridger (1804-1881). Trapper, scout, mountain man. One of first white men to see the future Yellowstone Park and Great Salt Lake, which he believed to be an arm of the Pacific Ocean. Became partner of Rocky Mountain Fur Company in 1830 and established Fort Bridger in Wyoming Territory in 1842. Laid out routes for the Central Overland Stage and Pike's Peak Express Company. Returned to Missouri in 1867 where died on his farm on July 17, 1881.


Rendezvous were held on a yearly basis at various locations until 1840, mainly in Wyoming, but Pierre's Hole in Idaho and Bear Lake in northwest Utah were favorite sites as well.


Fort Manuel Lisa was established in 1807 by Manuel Lisa at the mouth of the Big Horn River near Hysham. This was the first permanent settlement in Montana and was occupied until 1811.


John Jacob Astor was the first prominent member of the Astor family and the first multi-millionaire in the US. He amassed his wealth through fur-trading, opium smuggling, and New York City real estate. Famed patron of the arts. At the time of his death, he was the wealthiest person in the US.


In 1919, the Hudson’s Bay Company was approaching its 250th year in business. What began in a coffee house in London, in 1670, had now grown to become the undisputed leader of the international fur trade.


The desire for beaver fur hats in European men’s fashions dates back centuries and spurred the development of the 17th century North American fur trade. Beaver fur was the most prized of the fur trade because of its water repellant qualities. Encouraged by European trade goods, natives hunted beaver to extinction in some areas.