Shimano’s Varsity Program Scholarship Winners Announced

Students who are passionate about the sport of fishing and are training for a career in fisheries biology and wildlife management enjoy access to a unique scholarships to support their studies. Shimano North America Fishing and the conservation arm of B.A.S.S. have partnered to create this program to help recruit avid anglers into the ranks of state, provincial, tribal and federal fisheries management agencies.

“College scholarships are a key component of the Shimano Varsity Program – our primary youth fishing initiative,” remarks Frank Hyla, Youth Fishing Coordinator for Shimano North America Fishing. “The Shimano Varsity Scholarship Program awards scholarships to students who are members of B.A.S.S. and who are majoring in biology, fisheries, wildlife, or a natural resources-related field. We accept applications from high school seniors, undergraduates, and graduate students from across the United States and Canada.”

“This year, we are awarding scholarships totaling $10,000 to a group of very talented students,” reflects Gene Gilliland, B.A.S.S. Conservation Director. “We anticipate that these future professionals will become excellent practitioners of fisheries science and remain active participants in our favorite sport. We are proud to partner with Shimano North America Fishing to support their education and training.”

Winners of Shimano Varsity Scholarships for the 2021-2022 academic year include:

Liz Bateman, Shimano Scholarship Winner

Liz Bateman, a graduate student at the University of New Brunswick who is studying Atlantic halibut movements to support conservation and fisheries management in the UNB Biology program.

Justin Back, a recent high school graduate from Michigan who will attend Michigan State University to study Fisheries, Wildlife and Forestry.

Preston Chrisman, a graduate student at the University of Florida who is studying the impact of bass harvest on fish populations in small impoundments in the UF Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences program.

Evan Kamoen, a recent high school graduate from Connecticut who will attend the University of New England to study Marine Biology.

Lane Lassiter, a recent high school graduate from Tennessee who will attend Tennessee Tech to study Fisheries.

Cole Silverman, a recent high school graduate from Georgia who will attend the University of Tennessee to study Forestry and Wildland Recreation.

Wyatt Sipple, a graduate student at Kentucky State University who is studying largemouth bass production in the KSU Aquaculture and Aquatic Science program.

Jared Sparks, a student at the University of North Alabama who is studying Biology and Geographic Information Systems.

Wyatt Sipple, Shimano Scholarship Winner

Shimano North America Fishing and B.A.S.S. congratulate the 2021 recipients of Shimano Varsity Scholarships. Learn more about the Shimano youth fishing initiatives by visiting

About Shimano

Leading the fishing industry in innovation and quality for 100 years, Shimano’s manufacturing capabilities allow for anglers worldwide to enjoy their time on the water to the fullest. We designed the entire lineup of Shimano products to elevate angler experiences with features that continuously evolve to push the boundaries of modern fishing tackle while raising the bar for the whole fishing industry.