John's Journal...

Outdoor College Scholarships, Kayaks and Making, Collecting and Selling Waterfowl Calls

Day 1: Outdoor College Scholarships for High School Bass Anglers and the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame with Gary Mason

Editor’s Note: For many years I’ve believed that the way we can grow outdoor sports is to develop programs to give college scholarships to high school students who have expressed an interest in becoming outdoor professionals. Today there are some colleges and universities that give scholarships to young people interested in the outdoors. The newest program has started at the University of Montevallo in Montevallo, Alabama, just south of Birmingham. For more information on this program, you can contact William Crawford, the Outdoor Scholars Program Director at The oldest and the first university to begin awarding bass-fishing scholarships was Bethel University in McKenzie, Tennessee,, under the direction of Gary Mason, the head bass-fishing coach at the school. I met Mason at Blue Bank Resort’s Fins and Feathers Festival ( or 877-258-3226) on Reelfoot Lake in northwestern Tennessee in early October, 2015.

Click for Larger View“Bethel University helped to create the first scholarship program on the college level for students to bass fish and receive scholarships to attend college for bass fishing,” Mason explains. Mason also spreads the gospel to other colleges and universities about the advantages of offering an outdoor curriculum and scholarships to high schoolers who want to develop careers in the out-of-doors.

Click for Larger View“So far I’ve helped three other universities establish their outdoor scholarship programs and outdoor curriculums for students with a passion for the out-of-doors who want to learn about the career opportunities available to them in the outdoor industry,” Mason reports. “Since these young people don’t know how to learn what’s required to become an outdoor professional, this new curriculum that’s being developed and the new scholarship opportunities that are being created will help the outdoor industry meet and work with these young people to insure the future of this industry.”

To learn more about this program, click here, and meet Gary Mason:

The Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame:

Click for Larger ViewMore than a decade ago, Mason also became concerned that future generations of outdoorsmen might forget the trailblazers who had gone before them. These men and women created what we now call the outdoor industry. These ordinary people obtained fame and fortune by excelling in hunting, fishing, making and selling outdoor equipment and communicating the out-of-doors through radio, TV, books, magazines, art and the Internet. These outdoor-industry pioneers took outdoor sports that primarily had been family recreation and helped them to now become some of the nation’s leading businesses.

Click for Larger ViewGary Mason founded the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame in 2002 that today features some of the most-recognized outdoor names inducted into it each year. Currently there are 102 members of the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame, including people from all across the outdoor industry. You can learn more by going to or watching this video:

Gary Mason is a unique individual, who’s recruiting, developing and educating the future leaders of the bass-fishing industry and at the same time preserving the history, the memories and the stories of the greats in the outdoors in the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame.

To learn more about the many facets of the outdoors, you can purchase John E. Phillips’ eBooks and print books at You also can download free books on cooking crappie and catfish and making jerky besides some other titles at

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About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Kayaks – an Inexpensive Way to Fish

Check back each day this week for more about Outdoor College Scholarships, Kayaks and Making, Collecting and Selling Waterfowl Calls

Day 1: Outdoor College Scholarships for High School Bass Anglers and the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame with Gary Mason
Day 2: Kayaks – an Inexpensive Way to Fish
Day 3: You Can Make Money in the Outdoors Making and Selling Waterfowl Calls with Benny Marney of Hayes Calls and Bernie Forte
Day 4: Collecting and Selling Waterfowl Calls with Scotty Hayes
Day 5: The Callmakers and Collectors Association of America

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Entry 845, Day 1