Marie Tillman, president and co-founder of the Pat Tillman Foundation, recently announced the names of the 60 U.S. service members, veterans and military spouses chosen as 2016 Tillman Scholars, one of which was Advanced Programs student Ashley La Rue.
In recognition of their military service, leadership and academic excellence, the newly selected class will receive more than $1.8 million in scholarships to pursue their higher education and continue their service in the fields of medicine, law, business, policy, technology, education and the arts.
La Rue is a military spouse, working on her Master of Arts in International Relations through OU Outreach’s Advanced Programs. While supporting her husband in his military career, she had the opportunity to work at the U.S. Embassy in Dakar, Senegal, which inspired her to obtain her advanced degree. She hopes to return to West Africa for her career, where she aspires to help individual communities obtain the tools and resources they need to thrive.
“Each Tillman Scholar named has demonstrated a unique perseverance and dedication to empower others around them,” said Tillman. “As a community of emerging leaders – now more than 460 strong – they are joining forces to tackle some of the toughest challenges that our communities face in education, healthcare, civil rights and foreign policy. In Pat’s spirit of service, we are proud to unite and support them as leaders for our country both at home and abroad.”
To date, the Pat Tillman Foundation has invested nearly $14 million in academic support since 2004, and named more than 460 Tillman Scholars at more than 100 academic institutions nationwide. On July 21-24, the foundation will convene the 2016 Pat Tillman Leadership Summit, bringing together new, current and alumni Tillman Scholars at Roosevelt University and VenueSIX10 in Chicago to collaborate and address some of the toughest challenges impacting the country and our communities. For the full list of 2016 Tillman Scholars, with the service branches, institutions and fields of study from which they were selected, visit: http://pattillmanfoundation.org/2016class
The Tillman Scholars Program
Founded in 2008, the Tillman Scholars program supports the nation’s active-duty service members, veterans, and military spouses by investing in their higher education. The scholarship program covers direct study-related expenses, including tuition and fees, books and living expenses, for scholars who are pursuing undergraduate, graduate or post-graduate degrees as full-time students at public or private, U.S.-based accredited institutions. The selection process for the Tillman Scholars program is highly competitive with up to 60 Tillman Scholars chosen annually.
2016-2017 University Partners
During the 2016 selection process, the foundation collaborated with 17 University Partners, who offer innovative, veteran-specific services and a strong culture of support for military veterans and spouses while providing rigorous academic experiences, to identify and select qualified candidates on their campuses for the Tillman Scholar screening process. The 2016-2017 University Partners included Arizona State University; Columbia University; Georgetown University; George Washington University; Indiana University; Texas A&M University; The Ohio State University; The University of Alabama; University of Arizona; University of California, Los Angeles; University of Maryland, College Park; University of Minnesota; University of Missouri System; University of Oklahoma; University of Oregon; University of South Florida; and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.