Bernhard and Kathrine Laursen Scholarship

Bernhard Laursen immigrated to Boston, MA from Haderslev, Denmark in the 1920’s. Bernhard painted houses for a living, though he had been trained as a farm manager in both Denmark and Germany. When the Great Depression hit and he found himself out of a job, he learned of an opening for a supervisor of a student paint crew and a gymnastics teacher (he was a proficient gymnast) at the Asheville Farm School (which evolved into Warren Wilson College). He came to the Farm School in 1931 and within several years became Farm Manager, a position he held until his retirement in 1957. His wife Kathrine became the school’s dietitian. With the help of a student crew, she planned and prepared meals for the entire student body and some staff using food primarily from the College farm. Bernhard Laursen retired in 1957 due to poor health, but he was at the farm almost every day to help his son, Ernst, who succeeded him as Farm Manager and who retired in 1996. "Fessor," as Bernhard was affectionately called, died in 1972. At that time a scholarship fund was established in his memory. When Mrs. Laursen died in 1987, the name of the fund was changed to also memorialize her. This scholarship is awarded based on need and character.