The UL Lafayette Alumni Association achieved new heights this academic year after awarding $70,000 in scholarship money. Ten endowed scholarships, one for each of the nine colleges and one for an Association of Future Alumni member, totaled at $20,000. Through the license plate program, the Alumni Association was able to award another 25 scholarships totaling $50,000.
The Alumni Association awarded scholarships to 35 students. Recipients were also invited to a social at the Alumni Center in celebration of being selected. “This scholarship has helped me continue my goal of being the first in my family to graduate with a bachelors degree,” said scholarship recipient Sonja Defelice. “I’m a single mother of two amazing boys and my youngest is also a student at UL Lafayette. I have used all my Pell Grant funds, so this scholarship was a blessing to me. I’m so grateful and proud to be a Ragin’ Cajun.” Defelice is studying business management in the B.I. Moody III College of Business Administration.
The Christiana Smith Alumni Chapter awarded six scholarships totaling $4,500 and the Houston Alumni Chapter awarded one scholarship at $1,800.
Hannah Morales, a Lafayette native and senior in the Athletic Training Education Program, says she’s thankful for the scholarship allowing her to stay actively involved with Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns Athletics. “ I have the opportunity to work with the UL Lafayette Sports Medicine team in treating and rehabilitating our athletes. This past year alone, I accumulated over 1700 hours from working closely with football and women’s basketball, as well as tournaments in tennis, baseball, and softball. As a full time student and working 30+ hours a week with athletics, there isn’t enough time in the day for me to pick up a job,” said Morales. “I am incredibly grateful for the Alumni Association and this scholarship.”
The Alumni Association established its first scholarship program in 1984. The annual scholarship was awarded to a student within a particular college. The colleges would rotate the Alumni Association Scholarship so that every tenth year, it would be awarded to the same college.
The Alumni Association now offers ten endowed scholarships each year. These award $2,000 per academic year ($1,000 each fall and spring) to a full-time student in each academic college and one from the Association of Future Alumni. Funding for these scholarships comes from restricted scholarship gifts to the Alumni Association through the Alumni Loyalty Fund and other sources like the specialty license plate.
Alumni and friends can read more about the impact of scholarships on students online. Gifts to the scholarship fund can also be made online by choosing the “UL Lafayette Alumni Association Scholarship Fund” designation on the giving page.
Photo: 2018-2019 scholarship recipients show their Ragin' Cajun pride at the Scholarship Recipients Social.