Back to Military Life

Winners of JBLM family member scholarships recognized

Jessica Hall/JBLM PAO JBLM Family Member Scholarship Fund recipients and Lt. Col. John Mayer, JBLM DOL, pose for a photo after the awards ceremony June 8.

Email Article Print Article Share on Facebook Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon

With their families and friends looking on, future doctors, nurses, teachers and engineers received scholarships from the JBLM Family Member Scholarship Fund at the Family Resource Center on Joint Base Lewis-McChord June 8. The 24 recipients are the children and spouses of Soldiers stationed at JBLM, retired Soldiers or survivors of deceased Soldiers living in the area, working toward their associates or bachelor's degrees and pursuing their dreams.

"We're incredibly fortunate to participate and honored to award these individuals," JBLM Family Member Scholarship Fund President Jen Betty said.

Winners were selected after five judges read and scored their applications, which included transcripts, volunteer activity, letters of recommendation and personal essays. Applications were stripped of personal information, particularly names, so that judges scored them without bias.

For retired Col. Paul Wood, judging is a natural extension after spending years working with the Army ROTC program as a professor of military science. He was impressed with the number of activities applicants were involved in, from sports to volunteerism.

"I'm amazed at the breadth of experience," Wood said. "A lot of the applications portrayed doing an awful lot of things ... they touch a lot of things."

This year the scholarship fund awarded $29,500 to the winners, with individual scholarships ranging from $500 to $2,500. The fund is made possible through donations from organizations on post, local businesses and private donations.

"I love that the community comes together," Joanne Scully, fund treasurer, said.

Lieutenant Colonel John Mayer, JBLM Directorate of Logistics, spoke to the awardees about how scholarships not only help financially - his own undergraduate degree was possible thanks to a ROTC scholarship - but how they can open the door to other opportunities.

"They serve as an opportunity for students to study abroad and get internships," Mayer said. "You just never know where a college scholarship will take you."

For the awardees, the scholarship will help pay for tuition and program fees, something that they know all too well will cost a lot of money.

"It's really beneficial," Nathan Knox, of Lacey, whose father retired after serving 20 years, said.

Knox had hoped to win a four-year ROTC scholarship to Gonzaga University, where he will attend school in the fall. He still plans to join the ROTC program and hopes to receive a three-year scholarship next year.

"I want to be an Army doctor and work with amputees," he said.

His interest to work with amputees was sparked by a Sports Illustrated article about wounded warriors who were fitted with prosthetics to play sports, another passion of his.

For others, the scholarship is much closer to home. Timberly Gregorious, an Army spouse, is working toward a degree in early childhood education at Pierce College.

"My inspiration was my sons, who (both) have special needs," Gregorious said.

She hopes to be able to help her sons learn throughout their own education with her degree.

No matter what degree the awardees receive or career path they take, the committee is happy to help them achieve their goals.

"It's so great that we are able to recognize such a worthy group of people," Scully said. "So that they can go on and contribute and give back to the community as well."

Read next close

Downrange Journal

Historic year for I Corps in Kabul comes to an end

comments powered by Disqus