By Elizabeth Bowman, FSPH Alumni Board President
Last year, the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health Alumni Board worked alongside the alumni community to launch the FSPH Alumni Board Scholarship to support the 47% of first-generation college students who attend FSPH.
Gifts to the scholarship provide financial support for students, such as Kaley Liang, a 2020 Scholarship recipient, who applied for the scholarship when she learned that her employment as a server in a restaurant would end due to the restaurant’s closure from losses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Like many FSPH students, Kaley relies on the income she earns to help support the pursuit of her degree.
For those of you who stepped up to help us launch the scholarship, we cannot thank you enough for your much-needed support and the critical gap it filled for FSPH students in 2020, and this is exactly why we created this fund.
My friend and fellow board member, Gary Brumitt, was leading the FSPH Alumni Board when we started this scholarship fund and during our discussions about how best to support the school, he often shared he wouldn’t have had as many career opportunities had it not been for the Fairbanks School of Public Health.
Many of us in the alumni community feel this way. In fact, current scholarship recipient, Tyler Cunningham who is expected to graduate in December 2020 shared how meaningful the scholarship is to him and how it has inspired him to give back when he is able.
Cunningham shared, “I really do value the scholarship and I was very happy to be selected. I’m grateful to be a part of Fairbanks and have alumni that care. I think FSPH alumni give back to the school, because from my perspective, things have really turned out well for me. I’ve gotten what people go to college for. I’ve received the tools and skills to get a career. When I am an alumnus, if I am capable, I’m going to give back as well. Plus, school pride as well, IUPUI is awesome.”
Today, on behalf of the alumni board, I thank you for your contributions to the FSPH Alumni Board Scholarship. We believe that each scholarship will support the next generation of public health and health administration leaders who will carry us through our next great challenge. To show our commitment, the FSPH alumni board has pledged to commit $1,500 to match all gifts made between Giving Tuesday and 12/31/2020. To join us in our support of FSPH students, visit our online giving page.
Thank you for your consideration. Over the past few months, we have recognized just how exceptional FSPH graduates are, as our community works together to provide Indiana Hoosiers information they can rely on and data that is meaningful during the COVID-19 response. And, we know that we can count on you to continue providing scholarships to students passionate about a future in public health and health administration.
Thank you for all you do to improve the health of Indiana and support FSPH students.
Elizabeth Bowman, MPH’14
FSPH Alumni Board President