Casinos Benefit Missouri
Casinos Benefit Missouri

Maryville Student Wins Scholarship from the Missouri Gaming Association


MARYVILLE, MO – Kelly Filips of Maryville, MO, a 2016 graduate of Maryville R-II High School, is one of seven students in Missouri to win the 20th annual Project 21 Scholarship competition sponsored by the Missouri Gaming Association, the professional organization representing casino operators in Missouri. Filips will receive a $1,000 scholarship toward tuition at Missouri University of Science & Technology.

Filips won the award based on her article “Gambling Is Risky Activity For Teenagers,” which was published in the Maryville Daily Forum to help educate the community.

“The statistics were scary and surprising at the same time,” said Filips. “Of course, I knew underage gambling affected people financially, but a lot of the mental problems caused by addiction were scary.”

Filips learned about the scholarship through her guidance department. She is a member of National Honor Society, Octagon Club, Show Choir, International Club and her high school’s tennis, soccer and speech and debate teams. She plans to purse a degree in engineering.

The Project 21 Scholarship Contest was developed to educate young people that it’s illegal for persons under the age of 21 to gamble in a Missouri casino. The competition is open to all Missouri high school seniors planning to attend an institution of higher education in the United States within four years of graduation.

The students were asked to create an essay, poster or video aimed at educating their peers about the illegality and dangers of underage gambling. The entries must have been published or viewed in the students’ high schools in January or February of the contest year.

The Missouri Gaming Association awards two $1,500 scholarships and four $1,000 scholarships, jointly issued to the winners and the accredited institutions of higher education they select.

“The Missouri casino industry is dedicated to education in our state, both through the funding that results from gaming tax revenues and through efforts like Project 21,” said Mike Winter, executive director of the Missouri Gaming Association. “Our experience has been that young people are most effected by messages delivered by their peers. Project 21 encourages students to learn about the issues of underage gambling and share that information with others.”

The Missouri Gaming Association (MGA) is the statewide trade association of the Missouri casino entertainment industry and related professionals. Formed in 1993, the MGA provides research and information to increase awareness of the economic benefits of Missouri’s casinos. For more information, visit

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Media Contact:
Mary Schanuel
Synergy Group
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