For DonorsFor Applicants

Leslie Neihart Memorial Scholarship

1 winner$6,100
Application Deadline
Feb 15, 2024
Winners Announced
Mar 19, 2024
Education Level
Undergraduate, Graduate
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
Undergraduate or Graduate
Washington State University

Before passing away due to brain cancer, Leslie Neihart left a remarkable legacy remembered by her friends and family. Everyone who knew Leslie would echo that she was a smart, charming, funny, and wise individual. Her presence inspired a radiant energy that will be felt by loved ones for years to come. 

She was raised by her tight-knit family of five, before matriculating into the Washington State University in Pullman to receive a degree in architecture. Upon graduation, she proceeded to live her life to the fullest while simultaneously being one for others. 

Leslie made a home for her family and contributed to her community as a professional in construction management, a coach for her kids’ sports teams, and was above all an affirming, loving, and supportive partner and friend. 

In honor of Leslie Neihart, this memorial scholarship will support undergraduate and graduate studying at her alma mater, Washington State University. While all enrolled students are encouraged to apply, preference will be given to those who are studying architecture like Leslie had. 

To apply, please tell us what your post graduate goal is and how do you envision helping your community?

Selection Criteria:
Architecture, WSU, Passionate individual
Published October 31, 2023
Essay Topic

What is your post graduate goal and how do you envision helping your community?

400–600 words

Winners and Finalists

Winning Application

Emma Pettis
Washington State UniversitySEATTLE, WA
One of my core beliefs is that the connection between a person and their pet is a bond that transcends the typical boundaries of ownership. The love you feel from a single look in your companion's soft, sweet eyes is an incomparable feeling. Little is asked in return besides ensuring basic needs are met. I have a strong curiosity for the biological and zoological sciences, and a persistent attitude instilled in me by my loving family that helps me accomplish what I set my mind to. I plan to enroll in an accredited school of Veterinary Medicine after I graduate with my Bachelor's degree in Zoology in order to obtain a doctoral degree to practice what I'm passionate about. I choose to embark on the uphill path of pursuing a career in veterinary medicine because like many, my life has been touched by a special animal. This was a deeply personal choice for me, which originally stemmed from the loss of irreplaceable companions in my childhood due to preventable causes. I believe that good pet health has a direct correlation with the owner's mental health, and by helping creatures large and small, we help their connected humans live happier lives. Because of this, I want to share important information with those who consider pets their family regarding how to ensure happiness, health, and safety. Part of what makes our furry freeloaders so lovable is their helplessness to the driving force of their instincts. Antics such as that head tilt at an unfamiliar sound, persistence to figure out a toy, a trick done for a savory reward, and other silly habits never fail to make us laugh and smile. Following these instincts, albeit adorable and sometimes a little frustrating in cases, can also lead to harm if the owner isn't properly educated on risk mitigation. For example, many of us (myself included) love to offer table scraps and lots of treats to the sad eyes that follow us around or watch the table. It's important to reward good behavior, it helps your animal learn expectations and makes you feel good to oblige their desires. Problems arise when human food becomes routine or there is over-consumption of balanced food and treats. Although intentions were pure, eating a toxic food can lead to negative symptoms quickly, and overweight dogs and cats live lives two years shorter on average than their fitter counterparts. I know in my heart, we all would rather have more time with our best buddies than we are given, and not complicate that time with conditions that occurred due to misinformation or lack of knowledge. That's why it's my life's goal to be a trusted resource for animal-lovers, in order to empower owners to do right by their best furry friends. As I close this application, I want to restate that my passion is to promote and encourage responsible pet ownership. It should be simple and accessible to have a veterinarian in your corner helping you make decisions confidently. I am beyond excited to dive into the complexities of veterinary field, while practicing a holistic commitment to compassionate, empathetic, and ethical care.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Feb 15, 2024. Winners will be announced on Mar 19, 2024.

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