Southeast Students Awarded Missouri Legislative Black Caucus Foundation Scholarships

Kei-Shae McCrary Ariel Dumars

Kei-Shae McCrary, left, and Ariel Dumars

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Dec. 2, 2014 – Two Southeast Missouri State University students have been awarded scholarships from the Missouri Legislative Black Caucus Foundation.

Ariel Dumars, a Southeast sophomore dietetics major from Cape Girardeau, has received the $500 De Verne Calloway Scholarship for Undergraduate Students. The DeVerne Calloway Scholarship is awarded to Missouri students pursuing an undergraduate degree from a university or college who show academic excellence, community service, leadership skills and financial need. Dumars was recommended for the scholarship by Valdis Zalite, the director of TRIO/Student Support Services. Dumars is an active member of the program and works closely with the staff.

“As a recipient of the Deverne Calloway Undergraduate Scholarship, I express my most sincere gratitude for those who selected me,” Dumars said. “I genuinely thank all who were involved in the creating of such a wonderful opportunity to assist in a unique learning experience and a path towards a bright future with a career in the field of dietetics.”

In addition, Kei-Shae McCrary, a Southeast graduate student from Kansas City, Mo., pursuing a Master in Public Administration, has been awarded the $1,000 Paula J. Carter Graduate Scholarship. The Paula J. Carter Graduate Scholarship is given to Missouri students pursuing a graduate degree from a university or college who show academic excellence, community service, leadership skills and financial need. Ms. McCrary was recommended by Trent Ball, associate dean of students. McCrary works as a graduate assistant in the Academic Support Centers, supervising the restructured Academic Support Centers’ mentoring program.

“The best part of about this was filling out the application. I asked India Jeffery (Southeast Student Support Services retention specialist) and Valdis Zalite (Southeast TRIO/Student Support Services director), to write my letter of recommendation and they allowed me to read how they viewed me, and I was amazed by all they had to say,” McCrary said. “Winning the money was amazing because it allowed me to save some money for my upcoming graduation in case I need to travel for interviews or possibly move. However, I feel what they wrote about me allowed me to see how far I had come from undergrad to grad school. They saw things in me that I did not see in myself, and that was exactly what I needed at that time.”

Southeast is the only institution in which students earned Missouri Legislative Black Caucus Foundation scholarships in both categories.

The Missouri Legislative Black Caucus Foundation, Inc., is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1989. The Foundation was created to provide disadvantaged youth with educational opportunities through scholarships and internships, to foster partnerships with corporations, and to stimulate economic and social growth within communities. The Foundation explores relevant issues at their annual conference, providing the citizens of Missouri with information regarding pertinent issues which affect their lives and their communities.

The Foundation sponsors an annual forum to educate disadvantaged and minority youth about the importance of the legislative process and to explore issues which have a significant effect on their communities and lives. Youth from throughout the state attend the conference, at the expense of the Foundation, to participate in this forum with their legislators, educators and other conference participants.