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Madeleine Sullivan


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I’m Maddie, a queer woman pursuing veterinary medicine! As a future vet, my goal is to advocate for LGBTQ+ professionals and clients alike, showing others that underrepresented communities can thrive in fields like animal science and veterinary medicine! Bringing diversity into these fields is important, because I believe this will then allow us to better advocate for our furry patients, and the diverse communities we will serve as the next generation of vets! My goal as a future vet is to create a mentorship program that gives underrepresented students the opportunity to experience veterinary medicine early on, inspiring them to pursue this field! I am also interested in integrative veterinary medicine, which means utilizing techniques such as acupuncture, laser therapy, and herbal medicine as a veterinarian! Besides STEM and LGBTQ+ advocacy, I am also a part of the Guide Dog Foundation, where I raise and train future service dogs. I am getting my next dog in the fall, when I start veterinary school! I also love bullet journaling and reading in my free time. I can often be found reading a book outside when I am not studying at home or applying to scholarships. I can also be found listening to music, all the way from indie pop, to screamo, classic rock, and metal!! To achieve all of these dreams, I will be relying solely on loans to get me through the next 4 years of veterinary school.


University of Georgia

Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)
2024 - 2028

University of Georgia

Bachelor's degree program
2020 - 2024
  • Majors:
    • Animal Sciences
    • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other
  • Minors:
    • Biotechnology
    • Biology, General

North Cobb High School

High School
2016 - 2020


  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other
    • Agricultural/Animal/Plant/Veterinary Science and Related Fields, Other
  • Planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:


    • Dream career goals:

      Integrating holistic approaches into my practice as a general practitioner!

    • Alternative Formats Assistant - created document aids and visual aids for disabled students

      UGA Disability Resource Center
      2022 – 20231 year
    • Kennel Technician/Assistant - Assists technicians and doctors in restraint, surgery, blood draws, and any other tasks

      Local Animal Hospital
      2021 – Present3 years
    • Shadow/Assistant. Gave vaccines, scrubbed surgical sites, and learned hands-on from vets

      45 hours (East West Vet Care, Allatoona Equine)
      2022 – 20231 year
    • Student Assistant in Meat Sciences Research Lab

      UGA - College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
      2020 – 20222 years
    • Student Attendee - learned about different veterinary fields and admissions

      UGA Vet School For a Day
      2019 – 2019
    • Student - Learned anatomy of companion animals, basic suturing techniques, and how to give a dog a physical

      Auburn University Veterinary Medicine Camp
      2018 – 2018
    • Seasonal Kennel Technician -caring for boarders in facility

      Destination Pet
      2020 – 20211 year



    2009 – 20134 years


    • Blue Ribbon 1st place (3)
    • Second Place Ribbons (3)
    • Third place (2)


    2011 – 20143 years


    • Animal Sciences, General

      UGA Animal and Dairy Science Dept, — Student Assistant -(135 hours course credit)
      2021 – Present
    • Molecular Microbiology and Immunology

      Independent, with mentor at Emory University and Veterinarian — Independent Researcher for AP Research
      2018 – 2019
    • Animal Sciences, General

      UGA Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences - Meat Sciences — Undergraduate Research 100+ hours.
      2020 – 2021


    • North Cobb High School Orchestra

      LGPE (large group performance evaluation) and other school concerts and events
      2018 – 2020

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind — Full Time Puppy Raiser
      2021 – Present
    • Advocacy

      o-STEM — President
      2021 – Present
    • Advocacy

      LGBT Resource Center — Student/Volunteer
      2020 – Present
    • Advocacy

      Girl Genius Magazine — Science Magazine Writer/Blogger
      2019 – 2021
    • Public Service (Politics)

      PERIOD Organization — Volunteer and Memeber
      2020 – Present
    • Volunteering

      North Cobb Regional Library Teen Advisory Board — Founder and President
      2019 – 2020
    • Volunteering

      Pre-Vet Club UGA — Volunteer/Club Member
      2020 – Present

    Future Interests





    Pride in Diversity Scholarship
    Headbang For Science
    I am the first to express my love of all things pink, glittery, or girly with pride. Maybe you’re rolling your eyes while reading this, or scratching your head, wondering why on Earth I’ve applied to this scholarship. My love for all things “girly” can often be dismissed as trivial because of its association with young women. But honestly, what’s more metal than a queer woman who loves pink and glitter having the guts to apply to this scholarship? My “girly” interests intertwine with my love for heavy metal, and the memories I have associated around this genre. My love of heavy metal comes from my dad. I grew up sitting in the passenger seat of my dad’s car, kicking my pink twinkle-toe shoes to bands like Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, and Megadeth. My dad was a true 80s headbanger, and as I’ve grown up, I’ve been able to find my own love, both in these artists I share with my dad, and ones I’ve discovered on my own, like System of a Down, Deftones, and Jinjer! My goal is to show you that even the girliest of girls can hold their own as metal fanatics. Another aspect of my identity outside of music is my passion for pursuing veterinary medicine as a queer-identifying woman. Throughout undergrad, I was the President of Out in STEM, a club dedicated to uplifting and encouraging LGBTQ+ students to pursue STEM related fields. As President, I hosted workshops, guest panels, and community events that fostered a welcoming space on campus for other queer students. This work and my love for animals also led me to the Guide Dog Foundation, where I currently raise and train guide dogs for blind individuals. During vet school, I am so excited to continue advocating for disability and service dog rights alike, by raising yet another future guide dog! These experiences helped me to discover the impact I wanted to make as a veterinarian. As the only openly LGBTQ+ employee at the first veterinary hospital I worked at, I experienced firsthand how isolating a lack of acceptance and visibility can be in healthcare fields. To me, pursuing veterinary medicine is more than just my passion for treating animals in need, it’s also an opportunity to become an active advocate within my community. As a veterinarian, I plan to create a shadowing program that provides mentorship to marginalized communities interested in veterinary medicine. As a vet, I’ll demonstrate that confident and diverse vets are the key to serving our diverse communities. As a future veterinarian, I also plan to offer discounted services to those with service dogs and to people with in-training dogs, because I understand the financial hardships raisers can face. I want people to focus on training their dogs, or utilizing their service dog, rather than wondering how they are going to pay their vet bill. Not only are veterinarians responsible for animal health, but we also play an important role in the health of those in our community. Veterinarians play this crucial role by monitoring for zoonotic diseases and vaccinating and sterilizing animals that the community interacts with, ensuring human safety and wellbeing. As a vet, I will be dedicated to upholding these standards when it comes to protecting animal and human health. After four years of veterinary school, I will have over $180,420 in debt. I’ve wanted to be a veterinarian since I was a child, and I am dedicated to pursuing this career. I have already submitted my FAFSA for government loans, and I have a personal goal of applying to at least two scholarships a month to try and lessen the debt I will accumulate while pursuing my dream career. With my family unable to support me financially, it’s on me to fund my education, including tuition, housing, car payments, and other necessities to live. This scholarship would roughly cover an entire semester’s tuition for me, allowing me to study without worrying about paying for that semester’s costs.
    Student Life Photography Scholarship
    Book Lovers Scholarship
    As a queer woman, I have always been drawn to books about the experiences of LGBTQ+ individuals. If I were to choose one book for everyone to read, it would be Pageboy by Elliot Page. Pageboy is such a vulnerable memoir, where Elliot Page really lays themselves bare. As a reader, I was able to truly see into their mind, and how difficult their journey to accepting themselves as transgender was. Elliot Page really encourages his readers to confront their own biases and prejudices head on, which is so important to do as a good ally, and as a good friend to trans people. Although I am not trans-identifying, Pageboy really hit home for me as a queer identifying woman. Pageboy is a raw, intelligent, and emotional read about fighting for the acceptance and rights of LGBTQ+ individuals. Elliot Page touches a lot on how he hid who he was for so long, and how detrimental it was not only to their career, but also to their wellbeing. As someone who has hidden their identity and threatened their own livelihood and happiness by doing so, this really spoke to me. It felt like Elliot Page was speaking directly to me, and reminding me how important it is to truly be my authentic self. Pageboy is a book I think about often, and it is one book that I think everyone should read. In this day and age where anti-trans legislation is becoming rampant in the United States, it has become even more important to elevate trans voices. In a world riddled with discrimination and miseducation around transgender and LGBTQ+ people, I think Pageboy does such an excellent job of describing both the trans and queer experience that millions of people experience everyday. By having everyone read this book, I would hope that it would speak to them, and help them to realize the importance of accepting and supporting queer and trans youth. I truly love this book and wish I could share the experience of reading this book with everyone.
    1989 (Taylor's Version) Fan Scholarship
    2024 has been an amazing year so far, and I can’t think of any better way to celebrate these last couple of months than through the music of Taylor Swift. Music is a way for me to embrace the feelings I have and to live in the moment, as I love matching songs to my current moods and feelings. In 2024, I graduated with two undergraduate degrees and found out that I had been accepted to the veterinary school of my dreams for the Fall of 2024! The first song from 1989 that resonates with my 2024 is “Welcome to New York”. This song is the first song on my Spotify playlist titled “The Best Summer EVER!” This playlist is supposed to encapsulate all that I hope to do, and all the fun I hope to have before I start veterinary school in the Fall. "Welcome to New York" is on this playlist because of my plans to go to New York in July! This is the first vacation I’ve taken throughout my four years of undergrad, and it will be my first ever time in the Big Apple. Taylor sings “Welcome to New York, it’s been waiting for you”. As cheesy as it sounds, I really do feel this way. The summer of 2024 is my chance to celebrate all of the amazing achievements I’ve had this year, and all the work I put into getting into veterinary school. I can just imagine the sparkling lights of the city, the bustling streets, and the excitement that will be thrumming through me when I’m welcomed to New York! I am so excited for this trip, and I can’t wait to explore this city with my best friend, enjoying my first vacation I’ve been able to take in four years! Taylor’s music has been an outlet for me to destress throughout my studies in undergrad, and it’s only right that her songs should be the basis for my playlist of summer! "Welcome to New York" also brings this feeling of welcoming new beginnings and being open to what the future holds. Veterinary school is going to be a new journey that I will absolutely be welcoming with open arms. The second song of 1989 that encapsulates my 2024 is "Shake it Off". Although this summer is filled with lots of pride and excitement, I’ve also suffered from the imposter syndrome creeping into my mind. Being accepted into veterinary school is a very intense and competitive process. And although I worked so hard for my acceptance and my spot at a top veterinary school, it’s been difficult to not compare myself to other applicants. I have been trying to embody Taylor’s words and just “shake it off!” I should be confident in my abilities and not compare myself to other applicants. My future colleagues and classmates all come from different backgrounds and will all bring different experiences. My experiences are just as valuable as theirs’ and we will all learn from each other’s unique experiences and expertise! So, “baby, I’m just gonna shake it off!” I am going to crush the imposter syndrome, and enjoy the rest of my summer. It’s clear the first half of 2024 has been amazing, and I’m determined to make sure that the rest of 2024 follows suit. And, I can’t wait to find more Taylor anthems to represent the rest of my 2024.
    Trees for Tuition Scholarship Fund
    There were two things I was sure of as a young teen: I was determined to be a veterinarian and I was most definitely gay. As a queer kid growing up in metro Atlanta, I am no stranger to the fears a queer child can face while being raised in the South. I didn’t always feel safe expressing myself, especially at home with a family who was unsupportive of my identity. Despite these challenges, I’ve been able to find strength in being my true, authentic self, and this aspect of my identity is something I’ve been able to explore throughout my college career. Sitting in my Intro to Animal Science course on the first day of classes, it wasn’t hard to notice that I didn’t really fit in with the white, cis-gendered men in cowboy boots who had lived and breathed agriculture their entire lives. I sat alone, as the queer woman from “the burbs” and saw no one like me fighting for a space in animal science, or in veterinary medicine. Because of this, I established oSTEM, a club dedicated to advocating for and creating a space for LGBTQ+ students and allies in STEM related fields. As the current oSTEM President, I have been able to merge my passion for medicine and activism into one, as I’ve fought to create more visibility for all queer students in STEM at the University of Georgia. Finding this love for advocacy work while also building confidence in my identity has led to me getting involved in other non-profits such as the Guide Dog Foundation, where I am actively raising and training guide dogs for disabled individuals. Through my time in oSTEM and my experiences advocating for service dog and disability rights as a puppy raiser, I have become dedicated to continuing my involvement in activism as a practicing veterinarian. As a vet, I plan to continue this work by establishing a shadowing program that provides mentorship to LGBTQ+ students and other marginalized communities in Georgia interested in veterinary medicine. As a veterinarian, I hope to demonstrate that confident and diverse veterinarians are the key to serving our diverse communities found right here in the South. Through this program, students will be able to gain experience in veterinary medicine while also receiving guidance and advice from vets that share similar backgrounds and experiences as them. As someone who has lived in the South my entire life, I can’t think of any better way to give back to the community that has made me who I am today, than by becoming the community-driven and passionate veterinarian I dream of becoming. As I wrap up my time as an undergraduate student, I am so thrilled to say that I will be attending veterinary school in the Fall of 2024! I know that throughout these next four years, I will continue to advocate for diverse communities through getting involved in clubs like VOICE, an organization dedicated towards uplifting underrepresented voices in veterinary school, and by working to make sure that my voice is heard as a queer woman in veterinary medicine. I have found my calling, and I am excited to continue working towards being the best community advocate, and veterinarian I can possibly be.
    Bethel Memorial Award for Veterinary Medicine
    There were two things I was sure of as a young teen: I was determined to be a veterinarian and I was most definitely gay. Being able to explore my queer identity led to me discovering the impact I wanted to make as a veterinarian in my community. As the only openly LGBTQ+ employee at the first veterinary clinic I worked at, it was very clear that there was a lack of diversity, and sometimes even acceptance, in this field in the deep South. This lack of diversity made me feel isolated and like I didn’t belong in veterinary medicine as a young, queer kid in the South. Despite the challenges, I found strength in being authentic to myself and in advocating for greater inclusivity in this profession. To me, pursuing veterinary medicine is more than just my passion for treating and helping animals in need. It also offers a chance for me to create a platform to support LGBTQ+ individuals and other underrepresented communities interested in this career path. By supporting diverse veterinarians, I believe we will be able to better advocate for the diverse communities and clients we serve in this profession. One way I want to advocate for my community as a veterinarian is through creating a shadowing program that provides mentorship to marginalized communities interested in veterinary medicine! Through this program, students will be able to gain experience in veterinary science while also receiving guidance and advice from vets that share similar backgrounds and experiences as them. By encouraging others to pursue veterinary medicine, we will be able to represent and serve our diverse communities more efficiently. With more veterinarians that clients can relate to and trust, we can inspire stronger doctor-client relationships, helping their pets to receive the best care possible. My passion for client and patient advocacy has led me to explore different specialities and aspects of veterinary medicine, which is how I fell in love with integrative medicine, which utilizes techniques such as acupuncture, laser therapy, and Chinese herbal medicine. I remember seeing how transformative treatments like acupuncture could be for patients suffering from chronic conditions like arthritis, or terminal illnesses such as cancer. Witnessing these outcomes reinforced my belief in the importance of offering diverse treatment options to meet the unique needs of each patient. By utilizing integrative approaches as a small animal veterinarian, I hope to empower clients by providing them with greater autonomy and a wider range of options for their pets' medical care. As I start veterinary school in the fall of 2024, I am so excited to continue to explore my interests in integrative medicine and to grow my passion and knowledge in animal health! I know that throughout these next four years, I will continue to advocate for diverse communities by getting involved in clubs such as VOICE, a club dedicated towards uplifting underrepresented voices in veterinary medicine, and working to make sure that my voice is heard as a queer woman in veterinary medicine.
    Pool Family LGBT+ Scholarship
    Growing up in the Deep South, I’m no stranger to the discrimination LGBTQ+ youth face. Coming from a family that didn’t support my identity, every day I had to be on high alert. Did my mom try to go through my phone today? Did I act ‘too passionate’ about a gay couple on my favorite TV show? Is this outfit too gay? From age 12 onward, I was constantly walking on eggshells. There was never an option for me to come out while I was financially dependent on my family, as I was too afraid to face whatever repercussions they would deem necessary when finding out I identified as queer. When starting college, I felt like I could finally breathe. There was no one constantly watching me, and questioning who I was. I finally had my own space where I could feel free to express my identity authentically. Although I had some friends in high school that loved and accepted me for who I was, I didn’t consider myself out until my first year of college. Coming out of the closet to my peers and those around me on campus was terrifying. Although I am still not out to my family, I’ve been able to develop a better understanding of what being out and proud means to me. I’ve come to learn that I decide who is welcome to know the real me. I share my identity with those who deserve to know and cherish who I truly am. Coming to terms with this has opened me up to a world of self-love I never knew possible. Today, I can hardly recognize the hurt 12-year-old girl I once was, who turned all of her big feelings about her identity into self-hatred. Although I was finally comfortable with my identity in college, it wasn’t hard to notice the lack of resources for LGBTQ+ students at my University. I refused to feel like I did when I was 12, and I was determined to work towards making my college experience one where I could be my authentic self. By helping to found oSTEM, a club for LGBTQ+ students in STEM fields, I’ve been able to dedicate myself to empowering other young LGBTQ+ students, by promoting the professional and personal development of my peers. My university didn’t have the resources I needed to succeed as a queer woman in STEM, so I decided to create the change I wanted to see in my community. Not only have I been able to create this unique space on campus but I’ve also met some of my closest friends, friends that have supported me and shown me the true meaning of the queer community. Going forward, my passion for LGBTQ+ activism and acceptance is something that will impact all of the decisions I make in my life. As a future veterinarian, I want to continue this important advocacy work, as I aspire to be a voice for LGBTQ+ representation. Veterinary medicine is a field desperate for diversity. With only 7% of all veterinary students identifying as LGBTQ+, we have a long ways to go for better equity and opportunities for future LGBTQ+ vets. To address this lack of diverse veterinarians, I plan to implement a shadowing program that allows underrepresented students, especially queer youth, the opportunity to work under me and experience veterinary medicine early on. I hope to show LGBTQ+ students that not only is the community a source of support and found family, but also that veterinary medicine is a welcoming and accepting field, ready for change.
    I Can Do Anything Scholarship
    The dream version of my future self is an authentic, confident, and unapologetically queer veterinarian who fearlessly advocates for LGBTQ+ representation in STEM fields, such as veterinary medicine, creating a nurturing environment where other students like me feel free to be themselves.
    Dr. Howard Hochman Zoological Scholarship
    At only eight years old, I stood frozen in fear while a bunny sank lifelessly to the bottom of the pool. My heart was in my throat and I stood in shock as I watched my dad fish out the wild rabbit and start to give it minuscule chest compressions. One… two… three… Miraculously, the rabbit sputtered to life and hopped off, unscathed. With wide eyes, I knew then that I wanted to save animals, just like my dad did at that moment; I wanted to be a veterinarian. My entire life, I've always had a deep passion for animals. I was that kid that always tried to bring home every stray I saw, and who volunteered at my local shelter for years. Now that I'm older and in college, I've been able to delve deeper into science-related courses, successfully molding my love of animals and science together, giving me a better understanding of careers in veterinary medicine. As an animal science major, I'm lucky enough to be surrounded by animals in almost all of my classes. As a girl from the suburbs, I had never been near a cow, let alone touched one, until college. Majoring in animal science has given me so many opportunities to grow my livestock knowledge, while also becoming more confident in my animal handling skills. If you had told me when I was eight, while watching that bunny miraculously recover, that I'd be in an avian surgical class in college, I wouldn't believe you. From learning basic surgical techniques with chickens to performing husbandry skills for animals like goats and cows, my animal science major has given me a solid background in animal health and development. Not only has my major pushed me to work with livestock, but it's also given me the courage to seek out opportunities to work with other animals, and to experience other aspects of veterinary medicine I had never considered before. While I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian, I didn’t know what field I wanted to pursue. I decided to shadow a holistic veterinarian one summer, which sparked a passion within me for integrative care. While watching the veterinarian administer acupuncture and laser therapy, I was in awe at how well pets responded to these unique treatments! I'd see dogs come in with severe arthritis and after only a couple of acupuncture sessions, they'd be wagging their tails, their pain immensely lessened. This gave me an interest in integrative approaches and rehabilitation, which I now know is what I want to pursue in the future. I’ve found my calling within veterinary medicine and this summer while volunteering at a wildlife rehabilitation center in Costa Rica, I hope to continue to grow my passion for rehabilitation and further solidify rehab and integrative medicine as the field I’m meant to pursue. I often think back to that bunny I saw when I was eight, and of the medical care, or rehab, it may have needed after almost drowning. As a future veterinarian, it’s my goal to help animals, like that rabbit, rehabilitate from debilitating events through the utilization of integrative medicine. A lot of clients that turn to integrative medicine feel like traditional veterinary medicine doesn’t listen to their concerns. I love integrative medicine because of the different approaches it offers to pets for end-of-life care, arthritis, and other long-term health issues. By utilizing integrative approaches like acupuncture, herbal medicines, and laser therapy, I’ll be able to advocate for clients by giving them every treatment plan I possibly can, allowing them to make the best choice for their pets.
    Do Good Scholarship
    As a young child, I knew that being anything other than a veterinarian wasn’t in the cards for me. Growing up, I always chose the path that led me to work with animals. From volunteering at an animal shelter for all of the high school to currently working in a veterinary hospital, I’ve made sure to experience all avenues of working with animals. Now as a current college student, I’ve had more opportunities to explore my personal passions. While veterinary medicine is one of those passions, another one is LGBTQ+ activism. College has allowed me to fine-tune my desired path in veterinary medicine, while also helping me become confident in my identity. In the future, I hope to become a veterinarian that focuses on holistic medicine and rehabilitation. Through shadowing a holistic veterinarian, I found that most clients utilizing holistic medicine are disgruntled with traditional vets that don’t listen to their concerns. As a vet, I want to make it a priority to provide for my community by offering integrative techniques that mold traditional medicine with modern medicine. By offering holistic approaches such as laser therapy and acupuncture, my future clients will have more autonomy over the medical care of their pets, and more options than just medications. By having more approaches in the hands of diverse communities, I believe veterinary medicine will be better able to serve its local community. Veterinary medicine is a field desperate for diversity. One way I plan to be more accessible to my community is by being out as an LGBTQ+ veterinarian. If there are more diverse veterinarians, we can better serve our communities as a whole, with clients that will feel valued and listened to. When it comes to our pets' medical care, all we want is someone compassionate and understanding. As a woman and LGBTQ+ vet, I hope to be able to bridge this gap in representation in my community by running a welcoming and accepting veterinary practice. I’ve made it my mission to address the lack of representation within veterinary medicine. As a vet, I want to implement a shadowing program into my practice, allowing LGBTQ+ and other underrepresented students the chance to shadow and work under me. By giving minority students the chance to experience veterinary medicine early on, I can help to show them that veterinary medicine is a field ready for growth. This field is predominantly filled by cis-gendered and straight white doctors, and this is keeping diverse communities from being represented. Going forward, I want to help make vet med more diverse and understanding. This way, veterinarians everywhere will represent the diverse communities they serve. Being a veterinarian means having an unbreakable passion for animal health and welfare. But, being a veterinarian also means caring for our peers, clients, and local community. I want to help make this community growth a priority across all practitioners, so veterinary medicine can continue to grow and flourish.
    Manuela Calles Scholarship for Women
    Act Locally Scholarship
    Growing up in the South, I was constantly exposed to the idea that being gay was wrong. As a young girl trying to figure out my identity, hearing my family's dislike of the LGBTQ+ community was suffocating. And as a current college student, I've become tired of how hatred toward the LGBTQ+ community is present in all aspects of our lives. In my community and in the world, I want to see a change where LGBTQ+ youth are empowered to be themselves, and confident enough to pursue their academic dreams. The South often has religious and deep cultural roots that have led to many people still having prejudices against the LGBTQ+ community. I go to a large University in the South which has extremely limited support for LGBTQ+ students. I wanted to change this; I spent my entire life feeling less than others because of my identity, and I refused to let my peers feel this way as well. By helping to start oSTEM, a club for LGBTQ+ students in STEM fields, I helped to create the first community of its kind on my campus. For the first time, LGBTQ+ students in any STEM-related field in my community could have a space where they felt accepted and supported. Now as the current President of oSTEM, we've been able to increase the visibility of LGBTQ+ students within STEM majors and minors. We've held events such as resume review nights, and hosted guest LGBTQ speakers, allowing our members to grow professionally. By having access to workshops and guest speakers, LGBTQ+ students on our campus have been able to build up their confidence. Of the small amount of LGBTQ+ workers that are 'out' in their respected STEM fields, 70% of those considered 'out' reported not feeling comfortable or safe in their place of work. Statistics like this are what oSTEM is trying to fight. By increasing the visibility of queer students in STEM fields, ranging from fields such as Animal Science to Engineering, we can help normalize LGBTQ+ scientists and professionals, creating a more accepting and vibrant workplace. Although my activism takes place on a college campus in the South, oSTEM is setting up the stage for LGBTQ+ professionals all across the globe. With our professional building and community building events, oSTEM helps to create motivated and determined LGBTQ+ youth who can then advocate for themselves no matter where they work in the world. This work has not been easy. We've all had to overcome our trauma and fears around being 'out.' oSTEM has helped me and a lot of my peers and friends feel more comfortable being themselves within science. This club has helped to create change on my college campus and has become so well known that our University's LGBTQ+ Center has also funded our club and its work. oSTEM has had such an impact on my life, that I can't even imagine a future where I don't continue advocating for LGBTQ+ youth. As a future veterinarian, I hope to continue my work started in oSTEM by offering LGBTQ+ students and other minority students the chance to shadow and work under me as a veterinarian, encouraging them to enter a STEM field desperate for diversity. Although we've made these waves on our campus, it's up to our empowered members to help spread the confidence and support they've felt in our community across the country and the world as they begin to work as young professionals.
    Ms. Susy’s Disney Character Scholarship
    As a child, I proudly refused to go anywhere if I wasn't dressed in my princess heels and my princess dress. You could often find me cycling from Ariel, to Cinderella, and then finally to Belle. Belle was the one Princess I found myself circling back to time and time again. She was my favorite princess at age 5, and she is still my favorite princess today. At age five, I hoped that one day I would grow up to be Belle. I mean, who wouldn't want to be a Princess? On the surface level, I was in love with her wardrobe. I mean, her yellow ballgown is to die for. And having a magical castle to live in? That was absolutely out of this world. But as a child starting to gain more interests, I was able to find solace in Belle. I'd watch her read books in the town square, while the other villagers ridiculed her. I'd think of how my 'friends' would giggle behind my back as I read during recess, instead of playing in the humid, August heat found in the South. It made me feel isolated and weird, but Beauty and the Beast made me feel less alone. Belle was never afraid of reading, or being who she truly was, and that was something I admired wholeheartedly. Why should I be ashamed of reading, something that made me happy? Belle also protected her father fiercely and unapologetically. She knew her father's worth and his heart, and never let anyone tell her that he was crazy. Growing up with a twin brother with autism, I often watched my brother face ridicule and taunts. I refused to let people bully my brother, my built in best friend, just because he was different. I often saw myself in Belle. Much like Belle protected her father without hesitation, I did the same for my brother. When people see others they don't understand, they can choose to be cruel, instead of putting in the effort to be kind and understanding. Princess Belle put in that effort, and refused to surround herself with people who thought otherwise. Belle shaped my life as a child and showed me how to be the kind, fierce, and protective sibling I was my entire childhood.
    @GrowingWithGabby National Scholarship Month TikTok Scholarship
    @Carle100 National Scholarship Month Scholarship
    @normandiealise National Scholarship Month TikTok Scholarship
    Dog Owner Scholarship
    My entire life, I’ve always been surrounded by my furry, slobbery, best friends. I love dogs because they’ve given me companionship, love, and emotional support my entire life. The dogs I’ve owned have never simply been ‘just animals’ to me; they’re a piece of my heart. When going to college, the thought of leaving my childhood dog, Wendy, at home was devastating. I’d no longer be greeted by her aggressive tail wagging at the door, or her slobbery kisses first thing in the morning. A new environment with no dogs was something I wasn’t ready to face. How was I going to get through the stresses of college and the struggles of Organic Chemistry without cuddles from a dog? During my first week of college, I started noticing pups trotting around campus, wearing bright yellow vests. Students were training future guide dogs, and I immediately knew that this was something I needed to be involved in. Seeing these dogs and their wagging tails on campus led me to join my campus’ branch of the Guide Dog Foundation, and helped me to start raising my first guide dog in training: Sam. Raising and training Sam has changed my life and has led me to understand different aspects of the human-dog relationship. Of course, Sam still provides me with cuddles and love when I’m swamped with school work and needing support, but he has also taught me how to embrace a relationship with a working dog. Sam has shown me that not only do I love dogs for their love and camaraderie, but I also love dogs for their resilience and intelligence. I’m not going to sugarcoat it though, training a puppy to become a future guide dog is the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. Even though it’s the most difficult task I’ve ever taken on, I’ve never been closer with any dog than I am with Sam. Sam has shown me how important respect is when it comes to dog training. If Sam and I didn’t respect and trust each other, we’d never be able to be where we are now in our training, at only five months old. I’m closer to Sam than with any other dog because of this trust and respect we’ve built together, and because of the sense of accomplishment both of us feel after mastering a skill. Training a service dog has made me love dogs more than I ever have before. I see dogs now not only as loving best friends, but also as smart beings, capable of anything with a little bit of hard work. Not only is Sam my loving boy that gives me kisses when I’m sad, but he’s also a hard working and driven future service dog. Sam hasn’t just changed my understanding and love for dogs, he’s also impacted my future plans. When it’s time for him to begin his official training, I plan on raising another future guide dog, something I never would have even considered before college. And as a veterinarian, I hope to partner with an organization that raises and trains guide dogs, so I can still give back to this amazing community, by caring and treating these dogs medically. Sam has shown me that I love dogs when they’re wagging their tails, just as much as when they’re in a yellow vest, walking through the grocery store. When Sam moves on to official training, I’ll be losing a part of me, but with all he’s taught me, and all I’ve learned, I’m proud knowing one day he’ll be someone else’s eyes and future best friend.
    #Back2SchoolBold Scholarship
    Three Words: Adorable Academic Planner! My best back to school tip? Find the coolest and most unique academic planner to you and use it religiously. For me, that planner is blue with adorable miniature dogs all over the front. A lot of people get overwhelmed when school starts and that's where your own handy-dandy planner comes in! Hopefully, you'll have chosen a planner with sparkles, dinosaurs, or whatever makes you the happiest. That way, when you start planning out your weekly and daily schedules, it doesn't feel like a chore, it's something you look forward to! Even though it's called an academic calendar, the trick to staying organized during the hectic school year is to write down every event you know that's coming up. Dinner with friends? Pencil it in. An upcoming football game? Write it down! A club meeting you've been dying to attend? Include it! The biggest mistakes made with academic calendars is not writing down your entire schedule for the week. I include my exams, my clubs, and my intended study time (about 30 minutes per class each day). Balancing school is tough but with an organized academic calendar, you can easily tackle the week without panicking.(@maddiee.sullivann)
    First-Year College Students: Jennie Gilbert Daigre Education Scholarship
    My entire life, I've always known that I was meant to be a veterinarian. At 7 years old, nothing sounded better than spending every day surrounded by fuzzy dogs and cuddly kittens. And now at 20, nothing sounds more exciting and rewarding that learning about holistic medicine, veterinary rehabilitation, and advanced research surrounding animal health. As I've gotten older, I've been able to fine-tune my interests and find a true passion for medicine and science. As an undergraduate, I've always been aware of my differences as a student pursuing animal science. A majority of my classmates have been cis and rural straight men. As a queer woman interested in more holistic approaches to animal care, it was easy to feel alienated from my peers. There was virtually no support for queer students in my major, but I chose to not let my differences discourage me from pursing my dream career. Instead, I started o-STEM, a club that advocates for LGBTQ+ students in STEM fields. o-STEM has been a liberating experience, allowing me to grow professionally as a queer STEM student while also growing my confidence as a scientist. This experience has inspired me to be an advocate for LGBTQ+ students and I want to carry this legacy with me when I am a holistic veterinarian. As a veterinary practitioner, I plan on working in a clinic that utilizes holistic approaches, such as acupuncture and herbal medicines. By using these techniques, I hope to offer more treatment options to my clients and broaden people's understanding of what veterinary medicine is! I hope to return back to academia one day to expand the research on holistic approaches such as acupuncture, laser therapy, and herbal medicine. Some of these techniques have been used in animals for thousands of years through ancient Chinese medicinal practices! By expanding these practices and combing them with Western medicine, we can better diagnose and treat our patients. While expanding the treatments offered to animals, I also plan on utilizing my passion for queer youth in STEM. oSTEM has shown me how crucial representation, especially in agricultural degrees, is. As a veterinarian in a small animal practice, I plan to start an initiative for underrepresented youth to shadow me in my everyday routine. Gaining veterinary hours is crucial for a strong veterinary school application and those with less support and resources might find this even harder to do than their peers. By using my experiences as a queer STEM student and as a future veterinarian, I hope to show underrepresented students that STEM and veterinary medicine are fields that are accessible and ready for them. In the future, I don’t want to make tiny ripples; I want to make a wave so big that it booms as it crashes into the shore. I know my dreams are methodical and specific, but that doesn’t deter me; it just makes me more excited and determined to finish earning my degree, so I can make an impact in my community, veterinary medicine, and queer alike.
    Show your Mettle - Women in STEM Scholarship
    My entire life, I’ve always known that it was my calling to be a veterinarian. Nothing sounded more appealing than being surrounded by fluffy dogs and playful kittens at 7 years old. And now that I’m 20, nothing sounds more fascinating and rewarding than learning everything I can about holistic veterinary approaches and veterinary rehabilitation. Although I’ve always wanted to be a vet, as I’ve gotten older and gained more veterinary experience, I’ve been able to develop a deep passion for STEM and the discovery of all the different ways to treat and care for animals. I’ve always been drawn to STEM fields because of the ability to utilize my problem solving skills. Whether that problem solving takes place in my college biology lab where I’m determining an experimental procedure, or when I’m a veterinarian, creating the best possible treatment plan for an animal, I know that the STEM field will continually challenge me. As a vet, I will encounter unique cases everyday and I’ll have to quickly and critically determine the next steps to take for that patient. And with my growing interests in holistic approaches, like acupuncture, one of my goals while pursuing my STEM education and veterinary career is to broaden people’s understanding of veterinary medicine and what treatment option is best for their pet. By offering holistic approaches, I can help clients understand that science and medicine are broad fields that don't always have just one correct answer or treatment. As a queer woman pursuing a career in STEM, one of my biggest reasons for pursuing vet med is to advocate for women and LGBTQ+ students entering these hard and competitive STEM fields. As just an undergraduate student, I’ve already faced barriers in receiving my STEM degree in Animal Science. Animal science is a major that is dominated by rural, cis, and straight white men. Being in agricultural-based classes as a woman loud about my queer identity and my interest in holistic approaches isn’t something all of my classmates are used to. I want to combat the imposter syndrome I’ve felt due to being different than my classmates. I am just as capable as them and deserve to be in these classes. By starting o-STEM, a club for LGBTQ+ students in STEM, I’ve been able to grow my confidence as a queer woman in science. o-STEM has inspired me so much that as a veterinarian, I plan to be the same advocate for women and LGBTQ+ students that I am today. I am dedicated to pursuing my dream of becoming a veterinarian because I now view it as my responsibility to show others that STEM fields like vet med are ready for more diverse and outspoken students. Although I am determined to pursue my education in STEM by becoming a veterinarian, my family is unfortunately not supportive of my identity as a queer woman. One of the biggest hurdles I’ve faced other than being queer on campus is the lack of financial support from my family. I have had to pay for my undergraduate education by myself through scholarships, grants, and loans. I have had to fight tooth and nail to earn my spot and to pay for my education. On average, vet school costs $200,000 and I will be paying for that on my own, with no familial support. Without financial help, I will not be able to become the inclusive and outspoken vet I'm meant to be. This scholarship would help me achieve my goal of showing others that queer women deserve to take up space in STEM professions.
    Greg Lockwood Scholarship
    I’d like to see a world where every queer child is loved unconditionally. A world where every parent or guardian looks at their child with only sheer awe and love in their eyes. A world where being gay, trans, and non-binary doesn’t change anything about how they are treated. As a queer woman looking back on my childhood, what hurts the most thinking about the family I had that was never supportive. I didn’t have support for my identity at home, nor did I have any guidance from other adult figures in my life in places such as school. I would have done anything for my mother to have been there for me through my first kiss and my first heartbreak. I wish she could have held me through what I thought was the worst breakup of my life at only sixteen years old. As a child, I would have given up anything to have some sort of support and love for who I was. I’d like to see this change because I know how detrimental this lack of support and love can be. I’m 20 now, it’s been almost nine years since I first realized I was queer. For almost all of those nine years, I was terrified to be myself and only thought about the what ifs and the ramifications if my family found out. No child should have to spend their childhood in fear of what could happen to them for being LGBTQ+. Now in college, I’ve decided to be out, and it has been the most liberating experience of my life. I want to see this change because even though I consider myself out, there are still times when I question if being out on a Southern college campus is worth all the courage and determination it takes. Although I’m not going into social work, I know that going forward I have to be the change I want to see in the world. For all the scared, questioning kids out there, it’s my job to try to show them that being queer is okay, even if they don’t feel that support at home. As a future veterinarian, I plan to open my doors to allow LGBTQ+ students the chance to shadow and work under me, gaining crucial experience in veterinary medicine. I hope that if I can show LGBTQ+ students that they can be veterinarians, that the diversity and acceptance in this field will blossom. I know I can’t replace the need for love and support at home, but through my program, I hope to show students that there are other people in the community rooting for them and willing to lend a helping hand. As an adult, I have the power to break the cycle of prejudice and hate I heard as a child. As a future parent, that responsibility falls down on me as well. The pain and fear I went through is something I’d never wish on my worst enemy, let alone my child. I am going to treat my child with love, respect, and the patience that I wish I had received. I will never judge them for their sexuality or gender and I will always encourage them to be themselves. Although I wish to see this change in the entire world, that's a hard demand to meet, given the cultural perspectives and ideologies deeply rooted in society about the LGBTQ+ community. Although I may not be able to help the entire world, I can help my local community and my future children as an advocate, starting new waves of change.
    Glider AI-Omni Inclusive Allies of LGBTQ+ (GOAL+) Scholarship
    I’ll never be able to forget my mother’s steely gaze and the disgust written on her face as she told me “if you’re gay, I’d never, ever want to support you and your… girlfriend.” She said the word girlfriend with such distaste that I knew then, even at the age of twelve, that it would never be safe for me to come out to my family. It crushes my soul knowing that my mother will never hear about my first kiss, or my first heartbreak. She’ll never hold me after a hard break-up or meet my amazingly supportive queer friends. My family has missed out on truly knowing the real me just because of their prejudices and hatred. Coming to college, I was ready to start making my way in the world and doing everything in my power to pursue my lifelong dream of becoming a veterinarian. I decided to major in Animal Science and Biological Science, both majors within the College of Agriculture. Although I love my classes and the hands-on experiences with livestock they’ve provided, the College of Agriculture has not always been the most welcoming environment. A lot of my classes are filled with rural, cis, and straight white men who make me feel helpless: like I’m twelve and scared to be gay all over again. How could I find a space where I could truly be me? There were no out LGBTQ+ students in my Animal Science courses, and I soon realized I was one of the only students willing to be 'out' within this major, a huge step I wasn’t sure I was ready to take. With a lack of resources for LGBTQ+ students, I summoned all of the courage within me to start o-STEM, a club for LGBTQ+ students in STEM fields. o-STEM showed me how much I craved a sense of belonging and how so many of my peers also felt starved of the same camaraderie and representation I had been searching for. o-STEM has given me the confidence to be proud about my identity as a queer woman in STEM and in veterinary medicine. It motivated me to be the only ‘out’ student research assistant in a Meat Sciences laboratory, an academia and agricultural field dominated by men. o-STEM has shown me how passionate I am for LGBTQ+ and STEM advocacy, and I am determined to carry this passion into veterinary school and into my professional career. Veterinary medicine is one of the least diverse professional fields out there, lacking in representation from LGBTQ+ students, to POC. As a veterinary student, I hope to create or join a club to boost representation for LGBTQ+ veterinary students. This field needs more diversity if it wants to represent and help diverse, minority communities. If clients are not represented by their veterinarian, they could be less likely to trust them or go to them for help for their pet. I want to help address this growing issue as a vet student, and advocate for queer diversity and the ability to be ‘out’ in the workplace. And most importantly, as a veterinarian, I plan to start an initiative for underrepresented youth, especially for the LGBTQ+, to shadow me in my everyday routine. Gaining veterinary hours is crucial for a strong veterinary school application and those with less support and resources might find this even harder to do than their peers. By using my experiences as a queer STEM student and as a future veterinarian, I hope to show underrepresented students that STEM and veterinary medicine are fields that are accessible and ready for them.
    MudPuddle’s Veterinary Scholarship
    Growing up in the suburbs, the closest I ever got to a farm animal was shouting “look, a cow!” while peering out of a car window in South Georgia. Although I’ve always wanted to be a vet, I never pictured myself, a queer woman in the South, being able to break into large animal medicine, a field dominated by older men and practiced in more rural areas. This all changed during my freshman year of college when I decided to major in animal science, hungry to learn everything I could to prepare for veterinary school. I’m fortunate that I’ve had so many opportunities to work with livestock in my major. In my Animal Practicum course, learning to milk a cow and to care for cattle at our school’s student-run dairy sparked a passion within me for ruminant nutrition, something I had no prior experience with. Working with horses for another two weeks during this class made me want to pursue equine medicine, something that made my former “horse-girl” heart happy. Working with these animals has inspired me to pursue a mixed-animal practice where I treat cats, dogs, horses, and ruminants. Besides my newfound love for farm animals, the main reason I’ve decided to pursue a mixed-animal practice is because of the severe lack of large animal veterinarians in Georgia. Not only are large animals vets limited, but there is also a lack of small animal vets in rural Georgia as well. I plan to stay in Georgia but move to an underrepresented, rural area to help both domestic pets and farm life alike. Working with animals during college inspired me so much that I decided to shadow a local equine veterinarian. Interning with an equine vet specializing in both western and holistic approaches, like acupuncture, slightly altered my path in veterinary medicine. Though I still want to pursue a mixed-animal practice, I now want to become certified in acupuncture and herbal medicines for dogs and horses. By bringing different approaches to rural Georgia, owners can have more autonomy over the care of their horses and dogs than they ever did before. I can help better serve these rural areas by offering more treatment options for their farm animals. While shadowing an equine vet, I became enraptured with the lifestyle of large animal veterinarians. I loved the mobile aspect of the career, traveling from farm to farm in a pick-up truck. I got to see the sunrise while climbing into the vet’s truck in the early morning, and so many beautiful and diverse farms. In small animal medicine, vets are usually confined to a clinic; I loved the freedom of large animal medicine and it made every day I shadowed unique. It will make every day as a veterinarian unique as well. As a queer woman who had never even touched a cow until college, I never considered large animal medicine as a career for me. So, I want to be a large animal veterinarian to show others that LGBTQ+ individuals and women belong in large animal medicine, a field that has been dominated by men for decades. I’m determined to work with these animals and provide the best care possible, while also breaking down barriers as a queer woman. I deserve to take up space and to show others that LGBTQ+ and women vets can hold their own, especially in rural areas! I believe representation is the key to addressing the critical shortage of large animal vets and by showing others that I can do it, I could help lead so many others to this important and selfless career.
    Pride in Diversity Scholarship
    A Dog Changed My Life Scholarship
    As someone who has always carried a deep passion for animals, I can’t picture a life where I’m not surrounded by my furry best friends. When coming to college, I was devastated that I’d be leaving my family dog, Wendy, at home. Who was going to give me cuddles and slobbery kisses after a hard O-chem exam? Soon after my first week at school, I noticed dogs wearing bright yellow vests walking around campus and wagging their tails; they were in-training guide dogs! Immediately, I knew this was something I had to be involved in. Missing my family dog led me to learn more about the Guide Dog Foundation and to start raising my first guide dog in-training: Sam. Raising Sam has changed my life for the better. Although part of the reason I joined the organization was to be around dogs, the biggest reason was that I wanted to make a difference through my love of animals. By raising Sam and by joining the Guide Dog Foundation I’ve realized that as an activist, it’s my responsibility to use my platform to increase the visibility of all communities, not just the LGBTQ+ community as a queer woman. Sam has made me a better ally. One way I’ve become a better advocate for the disability community is through using “identity first” language, meaning that ‘blind person’ or ‘disabled person’ is used rather than ‘person with a disability.’ I choose to use this language to advocate for disabled people, rather than use words that make able-bodied people more comfortable. Raising Sam has made me a better advocate for all communities, even within the puppy raising community itself. Training Sam has inspired me to speak out against the lack of diversity in puppy raisers. Puppy raising needs more queer, and POC raisers. Not all disabled people are straight and white. By having more diverse raisers, future handlers can feel more confident in their dogs by having people that represent them training and loving their future service dog. Not only has Sam made me more passionate about speaking out, but he’s also impacted my future plans. When Sam leaves me to start the next steps in his guide dog training, I plan on raising another future guide dog. I love the puppy raising community and the impact it has. Saying goodbye to Sam and welcoming a new puppy will be hard, but it’s all worth it knowing that one day Sam will be helping someone gain their independence. I want to continue his legacy and raise another future guide dog while I attend veterinary school. After I become a veterinarian and work full time, that will unfortunately be the end of my puppy raising days, but that doesn’t mean I want to stop my involvement with guide dog organizations. As a practicing veterinarian, I hope to work at a hospital that partners with an organization that raises and trains future service dogs, so I can continue to care and treat puppies in training. I may not be able to raise a puppy, but I will still have the capacity to volunteer my time to make sure the puppies in training receive the best, fear-free medical care possible. Not only has Sam had these huge, impactful changes on my life, but he’s also helped me develop new personal skills. The most important skill he’s helped to teach me is patience. Training a puppy is hard. It’s taken many sleepless nights and many moments where I needed to take a step back and reevaluate the situation at hand. I’ve learned that through patience and determination, anything is possible. If I wasn’t patient and willing to work with Sam everyday, he wouldn’t be mastering all of his obedience skills like ‘sit’, ‘stay’, ‘down’, and ‘come.’ This patience and determination that Sam has built in me is something I will continue to carry and improve on as I finish raising him and my next puppy. These skills will continue to help me my entire life, especially as I pursue veterinary medicine, a field where I'll have to master patience and determination to make sure I treat every patient correctly. There is currently a Sam shaped paw print on my heart and I’m positive that his impact on my life and my attitudes will never waver. Raising a puppy is never easy, but the sleepless nights, endless amounts of patience, and the hours of work make it all worth it. Not only has Sam changed my life by becoming my best friend– he’s always there to give me kisses after a stressful day at school– but as a working dog, he continues to surprise me and make me proud during his journey of becoming a guide dog.
    Bold Science Matters Scholarship
    My favorite scientific discovery is one that was discovered thousands of years ago: the art of acupuncture. More specifically, my favorite discovery is the use of acupuncture in horses. Acupuncture is a Chinese medicinal technique, but many people don't actually understand the science behind it and the research that has proven its health benefits. As a future veterinarian, I am passionate about integrative medicine. A holistic approach, utilizing both Eastern and Western treatments, is the best way to address all health issues within our pets. I love the discovery of acupuncture, because it is a technique that has been used on animals for over 3,000 years. The Chinese found different 'acupoints' in horses that are located near nerves and lymphatic vessels. Though they knew hitting these points had health benefits, it is modern veterinary and medical research that tells us that stimulating these points can release serotonin and provide pain relief. I love acupuncture because as a future veterinarian, I believe that my patients and clients should have the knowledge about every treatment available to them. With acupuncture providing pain relief, some clients may choose acupuncture rather than harsher pain relieving drugs for their geriatric horse. Acupuncture is a safe method to target irritated joints and muscles and many horse owners seek this treatment out to avoid drugs while addressing these muscle and skeletal issues. Acupuncture is my favorite discovery because it's a research field that is always being expanded on, and it's a practice that more and more owners are searching for. Acupuncture can address so many issues in horses ranging from laminitis and other hoof issues, to gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea. In veterinary medicine, the practice of acupuncture will only continue to grow and it's a field I'm excited to contribute to as a veterinarian.
    Rho Brooks Women in STEM Scholarship
    My entire life, I’ve always pictured myself as a veterinarian with a stethoscope in hand, peering down at my furry patient in front of me. As I’ve gained more veterinary experience, I’ve discovered my passion for integrative and holistic medicine and I plan to become certified in herbal medicine and acupuncture as a veterinarian. I believe that a balance between modern medicine and more traditional, eastern approaches is the best way to care for a healthy and happy pet. Though I’ve always had this dream of becoming a veterinarian, attending a large university in the South as a queer identifying student dampened my passion and spirit. As an animal science major, a large majority of the students in the College of Agriculture are cis and straight, rural white men. They aren’t always the most welcoming to a loud, queer woman interested in holistic approaches. I was tired of feeling alone and judged, so I helped to form oSTEM, a club for LGBTQIA+ students interested in STEM careers. As the current Vice President, I’m proud that I’ve been able to make a community for other students like me to feel seen and represented. I’ve never felt more supported than I have in oSTEM and I love being able to help other STEM and pre-vet students grow professionally and personally. By joining clubs like oSTEM and by helping at my University’s LGBT and Disability Center, I’ve been able to make waves on my Southern campus, helping to show that STEM and veterinary medicine are fields accessible to everyone. I wouldn’t have been able to find the moxie to start oSTEM and to be out and proud about my identity if it weren’t for my high school AP Research teacher, Ms. Johnson. Even in college, Ms. Johnson is still the biggest influence in my life and my biggest supporter. With Ms. Johnson being the first teacher I had ever come out to, she was relentlessly supportive of my identity and my dreams. In high school, she encouraged me to focus my AP Research project on animal health, which furthered my passion for veterinary medicine. And outside of high school, she's encouraged me to continue to be the same determined and strong-willed person in college, regardless of what those around me might think. Without Ms. Johnson's support, I wouldn't be a confident woman in STEM. She's helped me to remember that I can become a veterinarian, regardless of the imposter syndrome I may feel due to the other students around me. As a woman in STEM herself, Ms. Johnson pushes me to take up the space I deserve as a queer woman in veterinary medicine. I no longer feel like an outsider on my college campus. I love the South, and I love that through her support, I’ve felt comfortable making a stand for myself and others. With Ms. Johnson encouraging me to be out and proud in STEM, I plan to continue this legacy when I'm a veterinarian. Queer visibility in vet med is extremely sparse, with many vets preferring to stay closeted. By embracing my queer identity as a veterinarian, I hope to start a program for underrepresented students to shadow and volunteer under me as a vet. I want to be able to show others that veterinary medicine is a field ready for more diverse doctors. Many students may not have the support systems like I found in Ms. Johnson. Because of this, she’s inspired me to help other diverse students in STEM as a veterinarian, so they never have to start doubting their dreams like I once did.
    Dog Lover Scholarship
    My entire life, I’ve always been surrounded by my furry, slobbery, best friends. I love dogs because they’ve given me companionship, love, and emotional support my entire life. Because of this, dogs have never simply been ‘just animals’ to me; they’re a piece of my heart. When going to college, the thought of leaving my childhood dog, Wendy, at home was devastating. I’d no longer be greeted by her aggressive tail wagging at the door, or her slobbery kisses first thing in the morning. A new environment with no dogs was something I wasn’t ready to face. How was I going to get through the stresses of college and the struggles of Organic Chemistry without cuddles from a dog? During my first week of college, I started noticing pups trotting around campus, wearing bright yellow vests. Students were training future guide dogs, and I immediately knew that this was something I needed to be involved in. Seeing these dogs and their wagging tails on campus led me to join my campus’ branch of the Guide Dog Foundation, and helped me to start raising my first guide dog in training: Sam. Raising and training Sam has changed my life and has led me to understand different aspects of the human-dog relationship. Of course, Sam still provides me with cuddles and love when I’m swamped with school work and needing support, but he has also taught me how to embrace a relationship with a working dog. Sam has shown me that not only do I love dogs for their love and camaraderie, but I also love dogs for their resilience and intelligence. I’m not going to sugarcoat it though, training a puppy to become a future guide dog is the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. Even though it’s the most difficult task I’ve ever taken on, I’ve never been closer with a dog than I am with Sam. Sam has shown me how important respect is when it comes to dog training. If Sam and I didn’t respect and trust each other, we’d never be able to be where we are now in our training, at only five months old. I’m closer to Sam than with any other dog because of this trust and respect we’ve built together, and because of the sense of accomplishment both of us feel after mastering a skill. Training a service dog has made me love dogs more than I ever have before. I see dogs now not only as loving best friends, but also as smart beings, capable of anything with a little bit of hard work. Not only is Sam my loving boy that gives me kisses when I’m sad, but he’s also a hard working and driven future service dog. Sam hasn’t just changed my understanding and love for dogs, he’s also impacted my future plans. When it’s time for him to begin his official training, I plan on raising another future guide dog, something I never would have even considered before college. And as a veterinarian, I hope to partner with an organization that raises and trains guide dogs, so I can still give back to this amazing community, by caring and treating these dogs medically. Sam has shown me that I love dogs when they’re wagging their tails, just as much as when they’re in a yellow vest, walking through the grocery store. When Sam moves on to official training, I’ll be losing a part of me, but with all he’s taught me, and all I’ve learned, I’m proud knowing one day he’ll be someone else’s eyes and future best friend.
    Bold Bravery Scholarship
    As someone with anxiety, even just talking to someone on the phone can send my heart racing, make my palms sweat, and my voice stutter. Anxiety has altered my confidence and how I approach people and stressful situations in my life. I could call my anxiousness cowardice. I could say I'm 'weak' or 'stupid' for not even being able to make a stupid phone call. Waking up with my heart racing and going to sleep worried about every little detail of the next day could be called 'dramatic'. I could belittle myself like this, or I could internalize the bravery and determination it takes to overcome my anxieties. I am not 'weak;' I am strong for getting through the day by myself. I am brave for being able to overcome my anxiety and to live life to my fullest. I am not weak by admitting that I struggle with anxiety, I'm brave for tackling it head on and taking the necessary steps to manage its effects on my life. I used to be ashamed about my anxiety, but being ashamed of my struggles isn't the correct way to go through life.
    Bold Optimist Scholarship
    In January of 2022, my mom was hospitalized with covid pneumonia and almost died. The doctors told us that even with the vaccine, she had a 50/50 chance of pulling through. We are very blessed that after a week in the hospital, she was able to come home and continue to get better. Though she's at home, she's been on oxygen for about six months now and is considered disabled. Almost losing my mom caused me to go through a depressive episode at school and I allowed my grades to slip as I'd lay in bed, with the covers pulled over my head all day. My mother getting sick while I was away at school was one of the hardest things I've ever had to go through. But while she was in the hospital, I knew that thinking negatively wouldn't help anything. I had to know that my mom was a fighter and that she'd pull through with the care from the best doctors. I had to realize that when she got home, she'd continue fighting to stay well, even if it took the smallest of baby steps. Understanding that my mom needed support, love, and enthusiasm while she recovered helped me out of my depression, because I knew that I needed her, and that she needed me even more in that moment. Her getting sick has taught me how easy it is to get lost in the dark haze of depression, but even if I want to succumb to that darkness, finding something worth fighting for is the key to not slipping in. I've learned that staying optimistic and waiting for the sun to rise is the only way to get through hard times. Optimism is crucial to recovery and I'll always hold onto that lesson.
    Bold Community Activist Scholarship
    My freshman year of college, I felt isolated and like I had no true community. As a queer woman attending a large University in the South, it was hard to find a safe space where I could express myself freely. And as a queer woman in STEM, I felt even more isolated in my major and within my classes. If I was feeling like this, I knew that there were other students out there going through the same thing I was. By helping found oSTEM, a club for LGBTQ students in STEM fields, we created a new community for queer students in STEM. As the current Vice President, I've never felt more accepted and uplifted than I have in oSTEM. By planning community building events such as movie nights, we've been able to make a space for all queer students to come together for support. And as the first club of its kind on campus for LGBTQ+ students in STEM, we've been able to host guest speakers that identify as LGBTQ+ and work professionally in STEM careers. These speakers are so important because its helped so many LGBTQ+ students on my campus overcome the imposter syndrome. oSTEM has helped so many students, including me, realize that there is space for queer students in STEM fields, and that we deserve to take up that space proudly. oSTEM has successfully become a home on campus for queer students and a name in the local community. By helping both local LGBTQ+ individuals and students on campus, oSTEM has been able to show how important queer representation is in creating confident and successful young, LGBTQ+ students.
    Bold Financial Literacy Scholarship
    The most important lesson I've learned when it comes to personal finance is to invest into my savings account. Personally, I act like my savings account has Harry Potter's invisibility cloak over it. I can't see it, I can't touch it, and I can't take any money out of it. To me, my savings represents my future: it represents my way to pay for veterinary school, and for any future emergencies that might pop up. Whenever I get a paycheck, I immediately put 30% of it into my savings. I say goodbye to that 30%, as I plan to never touch it, even if it is tempting. As a college student, consistently making sure that I put that 30% into my savings is challenging. Somedays all I want is to ignore my dining hall meal plan and order some mouth watering hot wings and fries. Though if I notice that my checking account is getting too low, I won't reach into my invisible savings account to pay for those wings. Having this discipline is crucial to my focus to paying for college and for being a financially responsible student. By skipping take out, and by not going out every weekend, I'm making sure that I have security in my life. My savings is going strong, and I plan to keep it that way so I can continue to invest into my future.
    Youssef University’s College Life Scholarship
    If $1,000 magically found its way wedged into my wallet, I’d have to hold back a scream of excitement. $1,000 dollars. There’s so much I could buy with that money. I could buy 40 new hardback books from Barnes and Noble, that new makeup palette from Sephora I’ve been eyeing for months, or about 840 M&Ms bags. Although it’s nice to consider the guilty pleasures I could buy with $1,000, I know that I’d rather spend that money in a more productive and meaningful way. Half of the $1,000 would go towards my tuition for my fall semester and the other half would go towards helping my mom pay her medical bills. In January of 2022, my mom was hospitalized with covid pneumonia for a week. About six months later and she’s still on oxygen and having monthly doctors appointments. Her medical care is so expensive and I’d like to alleviate some of these costs. As my biggest supporter of my dream of becoming a veterinarian, my mom has always been the one on the phone with me at 12 in the morning, just so I wouldn't have to study organic chemistry alone. She's the first to reassure me after I take a hard exam, and always there to tell me that she knows I can do it. My mom would want me to use the entire magically appearing $1,000 for school, but I know that she deserves the same love and support that she's given me.
    Pool Family LGBT+ Scholarship
    This video is published on youtube under "Pool Family Scholarship Entry" by Madeleine Sullivan.
    Focus Forward Scholarship
    I’ve always been able to picture what my future would look like: I’d be dressed in scrubs and have a stethoscope in hand, covered in the fur of my latest patient. Never at five years old did I imagine that I’d be so close to achieving this dream. As a sophomore in college, it feels as if I’m closing in on my goals, becoming one step closer to being a veterinarian. I am currently majoring in animal science and biological science at the same time, and through my degrees, I’ve been fortunate enough to learn in a hands-on environment at my University. In my poultry science course, we dissected chickens each week, and learned the insides and out of a healthy bird. And in my animal nutrition course, I’ve been able to learn everything that goes into feeding a dairy cow, and how to make sure she’s happy and productive. I love these classes because I had never even touched a chicken, let alone seen how its bodily systems worked, until college. These classes are preparing me for veterinary school by exposing me to animals I never would have worked with in my normal, suburban life. Though I love my college, I am aware of the fact that I wouldn’t have been able to take these courses without the financial aid and loans I have used for the first two years of my college career. With the average cost of veterinary school totaling to around $200,000, paying for both my undergrad and my future graduate school is daunting. I know that I will have to continue applying to scholarships, grants, and loans to make my dream a reality. Though this is a tall order, I’m not going to let it dissuade me from being the veterinarian I know I am meant to be. My goal is to make a difference in animal health and in queer representation by becoming an inclusive and community oriented veterinarian. I want to start a shadowing initiative to let underprivileged and underrepresented students experience veterinary medicine first hand. Gaining experience is one of the hardest aspects of applying for veterinary school, and often the most alienating for students of different backgrounds. By helping people to shadow and work with me, I aim to make the future of veterinary medicine more diverse and accepting. I want veterinary medicine to be a field that anyone can feel welcome to join. As of now, I am most interested in specializing in rehabilitation and helping animals with devastating injuries and illness. I am passionate about the medicine and treatment that occurs after the initial surgery, and after every other avenue has been exhausted. This scholarship will help me reach this goal, because specializing will mean that I will have to attend at least three more years of school after earning my veterinary degree. But with my passion for animal health and for advocacy for diversity, I know earning my degree is worth the money and the years of schooling I have ahead.
    Lo Easton's “Wrong Answers Only” Scholarship
    1. My mama has always told me I’m lazy and I guess it’s about time I believe her. I deserve this scholarship because put simply, I need money, and I don’t want to work. I can’t work and go to school at the same time; I need time to scroll through TikTok and to sleep in! This $1,200 will help me reach my goals from the comfort of my couch. 2. I’ve always wanted to be a veterinarian and I know I’m better than every other pre-veterinary student at my university, that’s what my mama has always told me. I’m meant to be a vet, so who cares if I’m a little lazy sometimes? I’ll get there eventually, because I adore animals so much. Loving animals is all it takes to be a vet. 3. The only time I've ever overcome an obstacle was during my short-lived career as a high school track and field star. I wasn't the best athlete so many of the obstacles I faced I never really overcame. I usually just fell. But during my last ever meet, when they decided to let me run, I made it over my first ever hurdle! The crowd–my mama–went wild. I was the star of the meet!
    New Year, New Opportunity Scholarship
    Hi, my name is Madeleine! No, I'm not french, and no, it's not pronounced "Mad-eh-LINE". It's pronounced "Mad-eh-LYNN". Very confusing, but I know you'll get it down. I'm so glad that you want to get to know me! I'm sure that you can tell by the cat-themed shirt I'm wearing right now that I love animals, and you'd be correct! I've wanted to be a veterinarian since I was five years old and now as a technician at an animal hospital, I get to hang out with cute dogs and cats everyday. Go ahead, be jealous! I have the best job and dream on the planet.
    Better Food, Better World Scholarship
    As a future veterinarian and current animal science major, a common theme in a lot of my classes is the importance of healthy and sustainable food practices. One thing I've learned in my introductory course to animal science is that most people don't understand the difference between "natural" and "organic" food labels, and that they usually think of fruits and vegetables first when it comes to agriculture and its regulations. As an animal science major, I am dedicated to agricultural communication and to promoting education around our food and where it comes from. A product being labeled natural doesn't always mean what consumers think it does. A natural label isn't regulated by the USDA and can still contain antibiotics or GMOs, depending on a companies' definition of natural. On the other hand, organic must be certified by the USDA and the FDA. Organic products must be monitored and clear of additives such as GMOs, antibiotics, and growth hormones. My food being "natural" is important to me, which is why I think it's important to clearly define what it means, and why food labeled as organic is the "natural" most consumers are actually looking for. I currently work in a meat sciences lab on campus, where I've been able to practice science communication by presenting my research. I've been able to learn a lot on how meat is labeled, and what different factors can affect livestock, such as stress, poor living conditions, and unbalanced diets. By understanding how these factors can affect the animals we eat, we can make sure their welfare is held at a higher standard. This is extremely common in farms that promote organic practices! By having grass-fed cows, and free-range animals, they live in a low-stress environment that can prevent build up of lactic acid, which can affect meat quality. This paired with no GMOs, through natural feeds like grass and grain, makes meat healthier to consume and more pleasing to the general public. By focusing on grass-fed or pasture raised operations, organic farms have been able to have a positive environmental impact! Cow farms have gotten a bad rap with the environment because of the runoff, and greenhouse gas emissions associated with them. Organic farms help to combat these issues with pastures for grazing and natural feeds. With large areas to graze, and with no water sources nearby, cows and other grazing animals can evenly spread manure without risk of contaminating the water. And by continuing to utilize organic feeds, which avoid pesticides that could be harmful to livestock, less toxic compounds leach into the ground, making sure the soil stays rich with nutrients to support future livestock. We are in an age where we are demanding to know where our food comes from, how it is treated, and what goes into it. This transparency is something we will have to continue to advocate for as leaders in agriculture. And with my interests in animal welfare as a future veterinarian, this is something I will continue to be involved in. With olive oil being perfect for cooking meats like steak, giving it a delicious, peppery flavor, advocating for clean food and sustainable practices can help make sure we will always have the delicious, and healthy foods we crave in our lives.
    Bold Self-Care Scholarship
    As a Type A personality, I can be the first to admit that self care hasn't always been on the forefront of my mind. For a majority of my academic career, I've let my grades in school define me and affect my mental health. Going to college, I realized this way of life wasn't sustainable. As a STEM major, I have to devote hours of my time daily to my studies. I realized that by studying constantly and not taking care of myself, I was letting my life slip away. One way I decided to fix this was by reigniting my passion for bullet journaling. My personal journal is full of colorful art, daily mental health check-ins, monthly playlists of songs I'm loving, and a calendar to keep my life organized. Bullet journaling not only keeps me organized for school, but it also gives me a healthy way to decompress after a long day and a way to check in with my emotions. In my daily logs, I meditate over my mood, doodle, or write anything that's on my mind. As someone whose mind is whirling a million miles a minute, bullet journaling has been the perfect opportunity for me to breathe, and take life one step slower. It's helped me care more about my mental health and self care. Having a creative outlet as someone dedicated to a STEM field has saved me, and helped to remind me that I am more than just my passion for veterinary medicine. This activity has helped me cope with the challenges of college and care for myself in a way I didn't allow myself to do in high school.
    Bold Friendship Matters Scholarship
    To me, true friendship means creating a space so accepting and warm, that my friends and I always feel free to be who we're meant to be. As a queer individual, finding friends that support me for who I am has always been a priority, especially as someone who has struggled with self acceptance. True friendship has provided me with a space where I feel loved and accepted. I could dance aimlessly while Harry Styles' music plays in the background, while carrying a rainbow flag, and I know they wouldn't even bat an eye. My friends would giggle and join me, dancing and screaming at the top of their lungs. My friends have given me a space I belong to and I am beyond grateful to them for helping me feel seen and appreciated. Friendship means unconditional love and I make sure that my friends never feel like they don't belong, because I know how soul crushing that can be. I've bonded with my best friends over our celebrated queerness, and I will always continue to fight for their safety, rights, and identity no matter what. I love my friends because of the small, but strong community we've been able to cultivate over the years. To me, friendship means protecting this community we've made, because I know how special and precious this bond we've created is.
    Bold Patience Matters Scholarship
    I'm going into a career field where my patients won't have a voice to tell me what's wrong. They might look sick, or lash out in pain, but never will you hear a dog or a cat tell you exactly what's hurting and why. Patience is important to me because taking my time and staying level headed is the only way I will be able to diagnose an animal that can't tell me what's wrong. Animals can't stand up for themselves so it's up to us as pet owners and veterinarians to advocate for their wellbeing and health. Patience is a virtue I have to hone in on as a kennel technician. When restraining a dog for a procedure I have to be slow and patient when I approach them. I don't want to move too fast and spook the animal, making it terrified of ever coming back to the vet. Being patient is the only way to ensure that the animal I am helping stays calm and safe when receiving medical care. Patience is important because while we all love animals, they can still be unpredictable. By not rushing, my coworkers and I avoid being bit, scratched, or more seriously injured. The safety of our furry friends and ourselves is the clinic's number one priority! Rushing in a veterinary setting doesn't give our patients the care they deserve, nor is it a safe practice. Being patient has helped me become more compassionate and understanding, because every animal has different tolerance levels and backgrounds that affect how they respond when they walk through our doors. By having patience, I can keep my own promise to help every animal that I encounter throughout my career in veterinary medicine.
    SkipSchool Scholarship
    Dr. Jane Goodall, a world renowned primatologist, is my favorite scientist because of her lifelong dedication to showing how compassion for all walks of life is a part of conservation. She inspires me because with no more than a notebook and her wits, she ventured into the forest of Gombe to study wild chimpanzees, which no one before her had done. Her findings revolutionized conservation as she advocated for the needs of both the animals and the local people in the area, helping to redefine our understanding of relationships between animals and humans. By integrating herself into their habitat, she proved that chimpanzees have complex social hierarchies, emotional bonds, and can make tools, all things that were previously thought to solely belong to humans.
    Pettable Pet Lovers Scholarship
    This is my dog Wendy, who's absolutely spoiled rotten. She won't sleep unless she has a blanket and a pillow by her side. Though, as a rescue that was found dumped on the side of a road, I know that she's worth everything. My family and I aren't sure how tough her past life was, so we want to do everything in our power to make sure her life with us is comfortable and full of as many warm blankets as she wants. I love Wendy more than anything and she deserves every kiss and warm snuggle she gets.
    Act Locally Scholarship
    As a queer woman attending a large university in the South dominated by football and sororities, it can be hard to find a space I belong to. I don’t always see representation for me, nor safe spaces for my identity. Last year during my freshman year, I felt alone and insecure. Was there really a place for me in STEM? Was I even good enough to be pursuing veterinary medicine? I was tired of feeling this way, and if I couldn't find a space for me in my community, I decided I was going to make one. Last semester, with a group of friends, I started oSTEM and became the Secretary of the first ever organization of its kind on my campus. oSTEM stands for out in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math and it provides a space for LGBTQIA+ students in STEM to grow professionally and personally. Running this chapter on campus means so much to me because it has created an outlet for representation that my university was lacking. In my community, I want to see more advocacy for queer students both within STEM and on my campus. I've started to make small waves of change on my campus. So far, we've held community events like 'oSTEM Thrifting' at the Goodwill and a "Back to School Bash' so other LGBTQ+ students in STEM can meet each other. To me, the most important part of oSTEM has been being able to create a space for queer students to connect and see that they’re not alone in the world of STEM. We've also planned professional building activities like a Resume Critiquing Night and have had BIPOC and LGBTQ+ leaders in STEM as guest speakers. Having these events is so important because of how easy it is for queer students to fall victim to the imposter syndrome, making them believe they aren't good enough to be in STEM. Having these events helps to prepare LGBTQ students for STEM fields in an inclusive space and shows them that they can take up space in STEM, and that they should do so loudly. My goal is to make sure that everyone who comes to oSTEM leaves feeling more empowered. Though this directly impacts my college community, I want to be able to continue my work in representation and queer activism as a future veterinarian. In veterinary school, there's little to no data on the amount of LGBTQ+ vets in the field, and what little we have tells us that most veterinary students choose not to be out in veterinary school or as a practicing professional. If the college I go to doesn't have a club for LGBTQ+ veterinarians, I plan on making one. One thing I've learned so far through oSTEM is that authentic representation makes all the difference. Representation made me feel more confident and connected to the students on my campus. It made me feel seen and worthy to be in STEM. I know that if this sense of community isn't present in graduate school, it could make tackling veterinary school that much harder for those that are missing a supportive and accepting community. As a queer student interested in veterinary medicine, I have yet to find another LGBTQ veterinarian in the field. This lack of representation has made me feel like an outlier and through oSTEM, I've been able to combat a lot of those doubts. But, I know not all students have the access I have to representation. So, as a veterinarian, I want to implement a shadowing program to allow LGBTQ and other minority students a chance to experience veterinary medicine first hand. Gaining veterinary hours is crucial to a strong veterinary school application and those with less support might find this even harder to complete than their peers. By starting this shadowing initiative, I hope to show students early on that STEM and veterinary medicine is accessible to everyone. The differing point of views that diversity gives us is going to push us forward as a society. Having queer, BIPOC, and other diverse veterinarians is going to make a field that is more accepting and welcoming to a wide variety of clients. Diversity is how we are going to make veterinary medicine more accessible to everyone! Veterinary medicine should not just belong to white, cis practitioners and I want to make sure veterinary medicine continues to grow as a field. We're the future, and I don't want any aspiring veterinarian questioning their path like I once did.
    Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship
    In December of 2020, my grandfather died from COVID-19. Just writing that simple sentence takes a little bit of my spirit and hope. My grandfather with COPD, who was always in and out of hospitals, died from someone in the ER passing COVID-19 on to him. I can't help but think that maybe the outcome would have been different if more people had been vaccinated, through guidance of public health professionals. What if half of his community in rural Tennessee had gotten the COVID-19 vaccine? Would he still be here today? As someone interested in public health, contemplating these painful questions infuriates me, but asking them is the only way to continue to advocate for education around vaccines and health. In fact, some people are so misled about the vaccine that they’re taking ivermectin, a dewormer for livestock. This medicine is crucial to so many veterinarians, and with people buying it as a homemade vaccine, veterinarians are facing a threatening lack of the medicine. As a future vet, this is worrisome. If veterinarians were more involved in community health conversations along with Doctors, they may have been able to stop this trend before it had spread and caused a national shortage of ivermectin. When my grandfather died, it was especially hard on my Dad. After my grandpa passed, he started to spend more time with my brother and I, even if it was just a ten minute trip to the store. His passing was the first real death I’ve ever had to deal with and it’s shown me how fragile life really is. It can be over in a split second, and I refuse to miss any of it. Because of that, spending time with my loved ones is what I value most. Keeping these bonds between my family and close friends is what helps me manage my goals and stay on track in college. Without them, I’d be all over the place, with no sense of direction on where to go. They are the reason I am in college pursuing veterinary medicine; they’re the reason I want to advocate for community health with veterinary involvement! I want a place in ensuring my family and community is safe by embracing One Health, which is a multidisciplinary approach to public health involving doctors, veterinarians, and scientists. My grandfather's passing due to other people's disregard has made my goal even more urgent. His death and people's reactions to this pandemic show how crucial education on health and vaccines is. We need more diverse voices, and more people willing to talk to those in their community about their health. Healthcare and education is a right, not a privilege and helping educate people in my community could save a life. I could save someone else from losing their grandfather like I did.
    #Back2SchoolBold Scholarship
    I wanted my dorm and my closet to be a mixture of everything I loved most: comfy clothing, Twilight, and a relaxing atmosphere! Although not low-rise Y2K jeans, my overalls provide a vintage feel while giving me the epitome of a relaxed, yet stylish look. With 9 A.M. classes everyday, I'm inspired to look my best while not having to put in more time than I have. Simple pieces like this allow me to get to class on time while feeling bold and confident. With twinkling fairy lights and flowers under my desk, I always feel like I'm studying in my own personal oasis, basked in the pink and blue lights. It makes studying less of a chore and my personal space doesn't feel bland. Having a desk I love makes school work manageable, so I can tackle the school year head on! Lastly, I adore the Twilight sign on my door, which is the best film to come from the Y2K era. Twilight is my 'comfort movie' I watch whenever I become overwhelmed with my STEM courses and this sign on my door lets everyone know what my interests are, allowing me to meet new friends on my floor!
    School Spirit Showdown Scholarship
    It's Saturday in Athens and you better be ready for game day! The energy on campus is electric and everyone is decked out in red and black, ready to cheer on our dawgs. As a current sophomore, my freshman year was limited due to COVID-19, so this year was my first ever UGA home game. On the left, wearing my UGA shirt, I'm ready to cheer on my team for the first time. After COVID-19, it's important that our school stays united and proud; this first game proved that UGA's students could bounce back and fight with our team.
    "Wise Words" Scholarship
    "You are enough. You are so enough, it is unbelievable how enough you are." - Sierra Boggess At twelve, discovering Sierra Boggess for the first time, I was introduced to the beautifully tragic story, “The Phantom of the Opera.” I was enraptured with Sierra Boggess’ performance as Christine Daae and came to love her as a person who embodied self love and acceptance. She fought for women and LGBTQ+ rights on Broadway and I admired that immensely. Sierra showed little girls like me that they were enough, for Broadway, or for anything else they wanted to conquer. My love of this quote is rooted in lessons I learned in my childhood. “Never let someone else tell you what you're worth” My mom would tell me, fire in her eyes. “Never let someone tell you you’re not enough”. My mom is why I’m the strong woman I am today. She’s also the reason I fell in love with "Phantom of the Opera" and discovered Sierra Boggess. My mother and I have spent countless hours together harmonizing with the Phantom, or trying to reach Christine’s high note. Through our shared love of "Phantom of the Opera", we’ve bonded and become inseparable. Whenever I watch "Phantom of the Opera", I’m reminded of my favorite quote by Sierra Boggess, and the hundreds of lessons my mom has given me over the years. This quote embodies what my mom has always wanted me to think about myself and it reminds me of how much I am loved. Sierra's words are so important to me because of how they represent the bond and guidance my mom has given me throughout my life. As a queer woman in STEM, the imposter syndrome is something I will continually face; I'm terrified that I won't be able to make it as a queer veterinarian in the South. I have these fears, but this mantra helps me through these doubts and shows me that I will never be alone with my mom by my side. I am enough, no matter what my identity or gender is. I am enough as a strong, queer woman and nothing should make me ashamed of who I am or what I've done. I am enough. I am so enough, it is unbelievable how enough I am.
    Darryl Davis "Follow Your Heart" Scholarship
    Before I even knew the word veterinarian, I went around calling myself a "pet doctor" as I prepped my favorite stuffed animal for "surgery", which consisted of a pink band-aid and a kiss on the forehead to feel better. My entire life, I've known that my calling on this planet is to help others and their pets live the best lives they possibly can. As a current student at UGA, I'm lucky to have so many amazing opportunities at my finger tips. My freshman year, I started researching in a meat sciences lab which opened my eyes to different opportunities in veterinary medicine I had never even considered before! Before college, I used to think I just wanted to take care of our common furry friends, cats and dogs. After being involved in research by calculating serial dilutions, creating gels that freeze the enzyme activity of meat, and so much more, I fell in love with research. I don't want to give up veterinary medicine entirely but now I want to narrow down my goal to conducting research in animal health; I want to make an impact through discovering solutions to animal health problems, therefore helping practicing veterinarians diagnose their patients more efficiently. As a queer woman in STEM pursuing veterinary medicine, I know there could be barriers against me on my way. In the veterinary clinic I work at, I've even faced discrimination that has caused me to stay in the closet, as I've heard my coworkers mocking LGBTQ people. I know I could also face these barriers at the predominantly white, southern college I go to, but I am not going to let ignorant people get in the way of what I want to achieve. I plan on continuing working as a student assistant in the meat sciences lab and I will continue to work at my veterinary clinic because I know I deserve a seat at the table to make veterinary medicine more diverse and accepting. By joining oSTEM, a club for LGBTQ+ students in STEM, I've started to address the lack of diversity in STEM fields. As the Secretary, I've helped find guest speakers that want LGBTQ+ students working in labs, or attending graduate school. I've been able to empower others and myself, and I know this passion will help me become an even more compassionate and driven veterinarian. In this world, I am most excited about what is going to come next for me. Before college, I wasn't publicly out. I hid in the shadows, always scared to scream who I was. Now, I yell it loudly, not caring who on campus hears me. This self acceptance and confidence was a huge step forward for me and I can't wait to see where it takes me as I continue to own my queerness and my skills in research and animal care. I want to continue to show others that being queer and working in veterinary medicine are not mutually exclusive, no matter what one ignorant person tells you. I am more than that one person and I have bigger plans they won't stop me from finishing. As a veterinarian, I plan on continuing my activism in LGBTQ rights and involvement in STEM. Even now at only 19, I've heard hurtful remarks that have made me question my right to take up space in STEM and in the veterinary field. I don't want any other young students to feel the same anguish I felt after experiencing those events. I want to implement a shadowing program either in my practice, or in my research lab as a vet to allow LGBTQ+ and other minority students the chance to experience STEM in a welcoming and encouraging environment. I've always known that my passion in life has been to help both animals and people but I never thought it would change into what I want to do now. Whether I'm in a lab researching the nutritional impacts of a new food in dogs, or helping an underprivileged student experience veterinary medicine for the first time, I know that I'm doing what I was put on this Earth to do, even if it a little bit different than what I imagined at fives years old, putting a bandaid on a stuffed dog.
    Fleming Law College Scholarship
    Having a phone is like yielding a double edged sword. One side of my phone has given me ways to connect to people across the world I never would meet otherwise, and has allowed me to access any information I need at the drop of a hat. The other side of my phone represents my time lost. My time stuck, scrolling through TikTok or Instagram endlessly. Like with anything, there are pros and cons. Being able to manage your screen time, and having good self control are ways to make sure your phone doesn't become your own master, or your demise. Having a phone is great, because it lets me have any information I need in a moment's notice. My phone has been a valuable resource in school. From playing Kahoot review games in class, to researching about The Stonewall Riots for a paper, my phone has helped me prepare for my classes to earn the best grades possible. Though there are these benefits to my phone, there is no denying how it can become an outlet for me to be distracted. I could be googling something important, but getting a notification from Tiktok or Instagram could easily derail my concentration and determination. I'm ashamed to admit that sometimes checking social media for a quick five minute break has turned into a two hour long spiral of me being glued to my phone. A phone can be a distraction, and this is extremely important to consider when driving, especially when utilizing a phone. Like a lot of people, I use my phone for directions and to play music while driving. Phones help me get to my destination and stay entertained on my ride; this can be a slippery slope. While learning to drive, my parents drilled into my head how important it was to never look at my phone while behind the wheel. My father is an attorney, and he's seen too many instances of lives being ruined because of distracted driving. Looking down to read a text, could be the reason I accidentally miss a stop light, slamming into a family of four across the street. I don't want to end my life or anyone else's because of my phone. Because of this, I have my phone set on do not disturb while driving. I do this to make sure nothing tempts me while on the road. If I do have music on, I keep it on a level that isn't alarmingly loud, so I can hear for sirens and other cars around me. I aim to drive smart, not distracted. My phone can be a great resource while driving, if I use it responsibly. While I have not yet used my phone irresponsibly behind the wheel, which is enforced by my state's "Hand's Free" law, I know there is a possibility I could slip up. To keep this from happening, I remind myself of how much I want to achieve in my life. I remind myself of how much I value the lives of those around me. Is sacrificing my life or the lives of those around me worth it, just so I can watch a Tiktok behind the wheel? To me, it's not. This is a rule of mine I will never break, because though my phone is a tool and a source of entertainment, being responsible is the key to managing my phone use, and keeping myself and others safe.
    A Sani Life Scholarship
    2020 was a year full of loss and new beginnings. It was a mixture of happiness and sorrow, and light and darkness which became hard for me to cope with. In 2020, I lost my grandfather to COVID-19. I graduated high school and started my first semester of college but I also had my senior year cut short, and started college with no friends. It was a rough year, and I am still recovering from everything that's been thrown at me. If anything, the last year has shown me that I'm stronger than I thought I was. 2020 threw curveball after curveball and I didn't hit all of them. I definitely had more than three strikes, but I didn't let those losses keep me down forever. 2020 showed me that it's okay to fall, and that the merit in life lies in how I pick myself back up again. Having my senior year of high school cut short left me with no sense of closure and I felt like I was being thrown into the deep end when I started my first semester of college. College life became increasingly hard for me. Because of the pandemic, I had no classes in person so I struggled to make friends. My life became a cycle of classes online, going to the dining hall, and then cocooning under a blanket to cue up Netflix. The only person I talked to everyday was my roommate, who happened to be my best friend from high school. Plagued by my worsening depression, I threw myself into my school work, but became a shell of who I was as a person. I became hyper-focused on my school work and my dream of becoming a veterinarian while letting my mental health and social life slip through the cracks until my roommate intervened. I can still remember her sitting across from me, her eyes shining in concern and love. She told me that all I could do during the pandemic was my best and that was enough. "I'm proud of you regardless," she told me. Her unmoving support no matter what I was going through meant the world, and helped push me into motion to start caring about my self-care and mental health. Around the same time, I lost my grandfather due to COVID-19. When he died, it was like I was spiraling back down into the depression I felt during my first semester of college. I was devastated and I was angry. I was angry that so many Americans decided to not wear masks, making it impossible to say goodbye to my Grandpa at his hospital in Nashville. With COVID-19 cases soaring, the hospital was taking no outside visitors and we had to say goodbye over facetime. I expected school to be virtual during the pandemic, but I never expected that I would have to say goodbye to a family member virtually as well. A couple months later, and we still haven't had a funeral or memorial for him, as we wait for other members of our family to get vaccinated. It was hard for me to look at the positive side when the pandemic brought me so much suffering and loss. How could I move forward? How could I ever be whole again? My best friend helped me realize that all I could do was my very best to be enough. I was enough, and I could be proud of how I had gotten through one of the hardest times of my life and still be excited for everything I wanted to achieve in the future. Now, as my first year of college comes to an end, I’m vaccinated and finally full of blossoming hope. My hope and readiness for the future doesn't replace the scars I've earned from 2020, but that's okay. 2020 was a hard year for me, but it helped show me how strong and dedicated I am to my future. I've learned that loss and depression are normal human experiences and that bouncing back from them makes you who you are. COVID-19 has shown me how unpredictable life is, and that's spurred me on, making me even more dedicated to becoming a veterinarian. With my time on Earth, I know my calling is to help animals and I'm not going to let anything get in the way of that. This summer, I'm working as a kennel technician at a local veterinary hospital and with everything I've gone through, I've just come out even more motivated and excited to reach the next stages of my life. I won't forget everything I went through in 2020, but I can carry what I experienced with me to become a more motivated and caring person, by making the most of my life while I still can.
    Liz's Bee Kind Scholarship
    Everyone is excited for their first semester of college, right? College represents freedom and new beginnings. College during a pandemic though, is completely different. I started my first semester of college during the COVID-19 pandemic and I felt isolated and depressed. I came in with no friends, and no solid direction. I'd go to class, to the dining hall, and then hole myself in my room, cocooned under a blanket. I was drowning and I didn't know how to get out of the hole I had dug myself. At the end of my first semester, I started to watch Criminal Minds, encouraged by my friends back home to start the show. I had been told repeatedly that I'd fall in love with the character Reid and they were right! Starting Criminal Minds gave me something to look forward to everyday and became one part of my life that wasn't clouded by my depression. Kennedy, one of my friends that pushed me to watch Criminal Minds, showed me how the smallest acts can make the biggest difference in someone's life. Every time I watched a Criminal Minds episode, I would text or facetime Kennedy, excited to talk about what I just watched. A lot of what we said aligned with: "Oh my god, Reid looked SO good in this episode" or "wow, I can't believe that happened!" But it didn't matter how repetitive our statements were, or what we said, Criminal Minds was our way to connect and it gave me a way to handle living through a pandemic. I noticed that even though Kennedy had seen all of Criminal Minds months ago, she always knew exactly what happened in each episode I texted her about. Did she have some perfect memory I didn't know about? One day on a call, I decided to ask her how she knew what episode I was on, and what happened in each one. Kennedy had just shrugged. "Oh, I just watch the first and last minute of every episode you finish so I can talk to you about it!" It took everything in me not to cry when I heard that. To her, it wasn't a big deal and it was only two minutes of her time, but to me it meant everything. Just to be able to have conversations with me about the show, she'd go out of her way to rewatch parts of it just so she knew what was going on. I choked up as I told her "this is the nicest thing someone has done for me in a while." And it's true. My first year of college was tough. I tried to manage a pandemic, my classes, and my depression and it was a battle everyday. But by finding Criminal Minds and talking to Kennedy every single day, I was able to find a ray of happiness to keep me moving forward. Her act of kindness kept me from falling deeper into my depression, and all it took was her watching the first and last minute of an episode to do so. Even though this is such a small act, it helped me get through my first semester of college. Being able to bond over Criminal Minds with one of my best friends from home helped me get through one of the hardest moments of my life. Even if they're small acts of kindness, they can still create deafening waves of change and impact on someone's life. Those extra two minutes of Kennedy's day changed the course of my semester and helped me out of my depression.
    Brynn Elliott "Tell Me I’m Pretty" Scholarship
    The day I was born, my mom almost gave up her life so my brother and I could live. The doctor in the emergency room accidentally nicked one of her major arteries and she would have bled to death if there weren't two doctors in the room that day to finish the delivery, while one stopped the bleeding. From the day I was born, my mom has been the most selfless person I know and without her, I wouldn't be half the woman I am today. From a young age, my mom taught me to be an independent woman and showed me my true potential. From as far back as I can remember, she gave me the tools to be a strong feminist and I admire her for instilling those beliefs in me. At age five when I still wanted to be a Princess, she smiled and told me I could be anything I put my mind to. "Remember" she'd say, "Princesses are fierce, not damsels in distress," and that stuck with me. She showed me that femininity and being a woman did not make me weak, it only made me a stronger and more determined person. A year later, at only six years old when I decided I wanted to be a 'pet doctor', she didn't roll her eyes and patronize me. My mother never told me that my dreams were outlandish, and she never once let me belittle my own goals. My mom is selfless. As a stay at home mother, she was there for every milestone I had, every doubt, and every dream I told her I wanted to follow. Though she's told me time and time again that I can achieve all of my goals and dreams, my mom gave up her own dream of becoming a pharmacist so she could raise me at home. I don't take that sacrifice lightly. My mom sacrificing her career makes her words of advice even more important and weighted with truth. My mom has always told me that I can achieve anything I put my mind to, and I know she says these things in part so that I never have to give up my dreams like she did. I know how hard it was for my mom to give up her career, but her being a stay at home mother does not make her any less of an independent, strong woman. She's still one of the most strong-willed and determined people I know and she helped me internalize those same values. My mom's sacrifice has impacted me more than anything else ever could. She loved me so much that she put her entire life on hold just so I could have the opportunity to achieve great things. Her sacrifice is the reason I am attending the University of Georgia on the pre-veterinary medicine track. As I go forward into my academic and professional career, I carry her words of independence and will, and her sacrifices with me. I carry my mom with me, sharing all my successes and all my failures with her, because without her empowerment and trust in me that I would move mountains, I wouldn't be here. As a woman going into STEM, the imposter syndrome, or feeling like I am not good enough as a woman, is something I will face in science. I will see someone doing better in Organic Chemistry than me, or a man dominating my space and I could crumble. I could throw in the towel, and forget everything my mom has told me, but I refuse to let that happen. My mom has shown me the value and strength I have as a young woman. She's shown me how important is it to chase after what I want and how I should never give up my dreams for anyone. As I go forward into veterinary medicine, I want to help other women and queer students see that they too can achieve their dreams, no matter what circumstances they are under. As a veterinarian, I want to implement a shadowing program to show other students that STEM and veterinary medicine is a field that's accessible and ready for them. I don't want any other young woman to give up their dreams because they're scared or feel like they aren't ready. By helping to make STEM accessible to all women and underrepresented groups, I can help instill confidence in other women just like my mom did in me.
    AMPLIFY Mental Health Scholarship
    Looking in the mirror, I used to absolutely loathe myself. All throughout middle school and high school, I struggled with how to manage my mental health and balance it with my everyday life. I'm the type of person who throws all their energy into something, while neglecting another, and that's exactly what I did in school. I threw all my energy into my AP Classes, my research, or any other school activity, while I let my mental health flounder helplessly. Because of this, my self confidence and self-value were at an all time low, leading to me struggling with depression and an eating disorder. I wish I could paint you a rosy picture, saying all is well and that I am fully recovered, but mental health and recovery don't work like that, and I am not looking through rose-tinted glasses. Though I am still actively working on myself, I'm proud to say that now as a freshman in college, I've learned how to use healthy coping mechanisms to deal with depressive episodes and the fall-out of my disordered eating. Though it is not always easy and it's taken years of learning, I now have the relationships and tools, like journaling and meditation, to make sure I don't fall back into those negative patterns. Attending college during a pandemic has continuously tested my strength, though. I came into my first semester with no friends, and no direction, and I left feeling just as lost. I started to fall back into those same, dark patterns. I threw myself into my school work and into pursuing my dream career, while letting my mental health fall through the cracks. With laser focus, I joined the pre-veterinary medicine club, found a veterinary mentor, and started researching in a meat sciences lab, all while taking on my heavy STEM course load. I made sure that I was so academically busy, building my way towards the veterinary field, that I put my mental health on the back burner. It came to a point where the only person I talked to everyday last semester was my roommate, who's also my best friend. Talking to her everyday is how I got myself out of these harmful, depressive episodes. Through her, I realized that during the pandemic, I was doing the best I could for myself, and that was enough. I learned that I didn't have to throw myself into my school work to feel valid, and that it was okay to deviate time between school, friends, and myself. I still focused on my STEM classes, always dedicated to my dream of becoming a veterinarian, but I also allowed time for me to go to the dining hall with my friend, and get involved on campus. This semester, I became the Secretary of oSTEM, a club dedicated to LGBTQ students in STEM. Not only did I meet an amazing new friend, but I also met so many other queer students who were struggling the same way I was. I felt seen, and proud that I had made a change on my campus for queer students in STEM, who felt the same disconnections as me. Throughout my academic and veterinary career, I hope to continue to foster this sense of belonging for queer students in STEM, to make sure they always have a space to feel welcome and safe. Going into the future, I plan on practicing veterinary medicine, a field which has one of the highest suicide rates of any professional field. With my mental health issues, this is something I am increasingly aware of. This doesn’t scare me, though. Even though some days are still battles, they are individual battles that I win. And in the future, that will be no different. As a vet, I want to continue my advocacy for queer youth, who disproportionately face higher rates of mental health issues. I hope to start a shadowing program to allow underrepresented students to see the everyday life of a veterinarian. And as a future veterinarian who’s struggled with mental health, I plan to be an advocate, colleague, and friend for others in the veterinary field struggling with their mental health, sharing my mental health experiences with them.
    Charles R. Ullman & Associates Educational Support Scholarship
    When people go to college, there is a lot of faux-philanthropy that goes on. In my college town, there are numerous organizations that thrive on the involvement of young college students. The issue is, as soon as school is out for summer, their source of donations, labor, and support dries up immediately. The community outreach in college towns becomes almost obsolete when its students leave the campus for summer. Or, some students participate in "Day of Service" events without ever taking a step back and thinking about the implications of their one day of community advocacy. I was worried that by coming into a new community, I would feed into this system that helps but doesn't make a lasting difference. And as a freshman during a pandemic, I definitely contributed to that until I found ways to make lasting changes in the community organizations I am passionate about. Community service is important to me because as a white, queer woman, it allows me to use my privilege and understanding of injustices I face as queer to help others around me. I believe that true community service is using your privilege or abilities that others don't have to make a difference in the lives or situations of others around you. Community service on the local level is especially important, because work done in the community affects everyone who resides in it. In high school, I volunteered at a local animal shelter for three years. I helped dogs from abusive houses, hoarding cases, and neglectful homes and it was my role to make sure they were taken care of in this next stage of their life. I loved working at Mostly Mutts because I helped change the lives of over 500 animals a year. And, with it being my hometown’s largest and most well known shelter, I helped hundreds of pet parents find their fur-ever friend. I was hesitant to leave Mostly Mutts when I went to college, but I had no other choice than to learn more about the Athens, Georgia community. It was hard to get involved during a pandemic. A lot of local organizations stopped using volunteers and with Athens having a local population with a high risk of contracting COVID-19, many were hesitant to open their doors. One way I got involved on campus was through joining the Pre-Veterinary Medicine club. Every month, they volunteer at Sweet Olive Farm, a local rescue organization that takes care of farm animals like pigs, horses, and goats. I wanted to avoid having a “one time impact” on the community. Meaning, working for an organization only once, without considering the long term implications of that service. When starting any service, I try to ask myself how I am trying to make a long lasting change. By volunteering regularly, the pre-veterinary medicine club ensures that there is always someone there to help care for the animals, rather than only showing up once and never again, making the organization vulnerable. Working at Sweet Olive on Sundays has been amazing. I’ve gotten more experience with animals like pigs and goats, and I’ve been able to help with all tasks from everyday farm maintenance to feeding the animals. Another way I’ve gotten involved is through women and queer advocacy. By joining the PERIOD Project Club at UGA, I’ve been able to pursue sustainable changes in my college community. Every month, we make menstrual kits with sanitary pads, and other healthcare products women in local shelters need. And over the summer, we make kits to help as well, making sure no woman is forgotten. By aiding in workshops about a cup and cloth, new innovate menstrual products, we’ve been able to educate other women on our campus, creating a long lasting impact on women’s health in the community. Along with this, I’ve become the secretary of the inaugural oSTEM, a club dedicated to LGBTQ+ representation in STEM fields. I am extremely passionate about the rights of women and queer individuals and going to college has given me opportunities to finally start getting involved. As a queer women getting an agricultural degree in science, I’ve felt the imposter syndrome in a degree filled with a lot of cis-gendered, white males. Getting involved in oSTEM has allowed me and others on campus to have an accepting space that focuses on empowerment and professional building. As the first club of its kind on campus, we are starting to implement representation for queer students in STEM on campus, something that had never been considered before. In the future, I want to attend veterinary school, where I hope to mold together my passions of animal welfare and health, women's rights, and LGBTQ+ advocacy. I’ve wanted to be a veterinarian since I was three years old and as I’ve gained more experience, my goals have become more focused. After attending veterinary school, I plan on opening a small animal and exotics practice in my community where I will treat animals and ensure that they are living the most fulfilling lives they can. And in my practice, I want to implement a shadowing program for underprivileged students, especially queer students interested in STEM and veterinary medicine. Gaining veterinary hours is crucial for a strong veterinary school application and those with less support and resources might find this even harder to do than their peers. By using my experiences as a queer STEM student and as a future veterinarian, I hope to show underrepresented students in my community that STEM and veterinary medicine are fields that are accessible and ready for them. In the future, I don’t want to make tiny ripples; I want to make waves so big that they boom as they crash into the shore. In my community, I want to change the lives of the animals I treat, and the lives of the people who step into my clinic, whether they be a nervous client with their pet, or a wide-eyed student like me, excited to pursue their dreams.
    Nikhil Desai "Favorite Film" Scholarship
    Just hear me out for a second: David Bowie in leather clothing, appearing in a cloud of glitter. That’s it. That’s all I need to say to convince someone to watch my all time favorite movie, Labyrinth. At age eleven, I stumbled upon Labyrinth while scrolling through Netflix. “David Bowie,” I thought. Isn’t that some singer my mom likes? I shrugged and hit play, enraptured by the movie’s promise of magic, goblins, and fae. Eleven year old me didn’t know what she was getting herself into. I fell in love with Labyrinth and its outlandish characters like Hoggle, a goblin who helps the main heroine, Sarah, save her brother from the Goblin King’s wrath. Most importantly though, I fell in love with the Goblin King, David Bowie, who molded my love for music and made Labyrinth my favorite comfort movie. Labyrinth brings me so much joy because as a niche cult classic, its fanbase is small, but passionate. When meeting someone who loves Labyrinth, it’s like rediscovering the magic the film showed me at eleven all over again. The elaborate puppets imagined by Jim Henson and the beautiful costumes made this movie different from anything I had ever seen before and rewatching it reminds me of what I love about life and myself. When the Goblin King sings “Magic Dance”, I remember the countless hours my brother and I sang in unison with Bowie, with even my mom joining in. Seeing Sarah’s stubbornness to save her brother reminds me of how I vowed to never give up like her, and to be as strong-willed as she was. Watching Labyrinth is like receiving a warm hug and no matter how old I get, I’ll always believe in the magic this film holds, and the power of David Bowie in leather pants.
    Pride Palace LGBTQ+ Scholarship
    I'm proud to be a part of the LGBTQIA+ community because identifying as queer has given me a sense of belonging and self acceptance I didn't always have from my family, or myself. By embracing my identity, it gave me confidence I knew I would rely on as a queer woman in STEM. The community allowed me to uplift myself and now I'm proud to uplift other LGBTQIA+ students pursing STEM careers like me! @maddiee.sullivann
    Pettable Pet Lovers Scholarship
    Starting college during a pandemic was suffocating at first. I couldn't breathe when I thought about everything that was going on: I was away from family during a pandemic, and I was away from my best friends at home, my pets. My four cats Graycie, Harriet, Perry, and Hamilton—all rescues I couldn't stop myself from falling in love with—and my dog Wendy have been instrumental in my mental health. I miss them while at school, but these photos remind me that the next time I go home, I know they'll be there for endless kisses, snuggles, and love.
    Rosemarie STEM Scholarship
    When I close my eyes, I can see myself in a white coat and a stethoscope in hand, taking care of my furry patient in front of me: your dog! I can see this dream in my head, and I can open my eyes and see the jumps I’ve made to get where I am today, and how much closer it's gotten me to becoming a veterinarian. As a freshman in college, everything I’ve ever wanted now feels like it's within my grasp. That’s both terrifying and thrilling at the same time. To me, a degree in biological science, with a minor in animal science, represents a chance for me to make a difference in animal health and in queer representation by becoming an inclusive veterinarian. As a queer woman in STEM, my degree holds a double meaning; it gives me a chance to overcome barriers like the glass ceiling, as well as achieve my goal of practicing veterinary medicine. Biological science is in my school’s College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences (CAES), meaning there is emphasis on courses encompassing animal sciences and animal health. Though I love the opportunity to take classes like Avian Surgical Techniques, where I learn basic surgery on chickens, there is no denying that the makeup of CAES is predominantly males, who are cis-gendered and heterosexual. Though they all live and breathe agricultural sciences like I do, I have always felt a disconnect with my fellow students. This feeling will unfortunately continue into veterinary school as well, where LGBTQIA+ students are extremely underrepresented, and feel safer hiding their identity rather than being out in veterinary school. To combat these feelings and trends, I’ve become the Secretary of oSTEM, a club dedicated to LGBTQIA+ representation in STEM. I am proud that I’ve gotten over five pre-vet students and numerous plant science students to join the club. With many of these majors overlapping into CAES, I’ve successfully started to give these queer students a platform and safe space to be who they are. While earning my degree, I’ve been able to make a change for LGBTQIA+ in STEM on my campus and I hope to be able to continue this mission throughout my academic and veterinary career. From all the experience I will gain from my degree, I know I will be prepared to enter veterinary school. So far, it’s allowed me to have a solid background in undergraduate research, which I now know is something I want to pursue as a veterinarian. By working in a meat sciences lab this semester, I’ve grown my knowledge on lab procedures and molecular processes of different meats like beef and pork. I’ve loved it so much that I know I want to include research in my future profession. I love animals and have a passion for science. I’m so thankful that my degree has allowed me to explore these passions through my animal based classes like Poultry Science, and my classes in broader fields like lab research. Taking my new interests in research and non-companion animals like chickens, I want to become a small animal veterinarian for companion animals and exotics, before one day returning back to academia to conduct research. By working in a clinic and in research, I will be able to spread my advocacy for queer youth in STEM. oSTEM has shown me how crucial representation, especially in agricultural degrees, is. As a veterinarian in a small animal practice, I plan to start an initiative for underrepresented youth to shadow me in my everyday routine. Gaining veterinary hours is crucial for a strong veterinary school application and those with less support and resources might find this even harder to do than their peers. By using my experiences as a queer STEM student and as a future veterinarian, I hope to show underrepresented students that STEM and veterinary medicine are fields that are accessible and ready for them. As a researcher, I can show other queer scientists that there is a place for them in what was once considered a “man’s field”. It’s time for research to welcome diverse groups of people and as a queer woman with a future background in veterinary medicine, I hope I can make my stance clear. In the future, I don’t want to make tiny ripples; I want to make a wave so big that it booms as it crashes into the shore. I know my dreams are methodical and specific, but that doesn’t deter me; it just makes me more excited and determined to finish earning my degree, so I can make an impact in my community, veterinary medicine, and queer alike.
    Justricia Scholarship for Education
    In my life, education has been a gateway to everything I have ever wanted to achieve. This is not to say that it’s been a clear cut path every time; sometimes it feels like the doors my education opens expose new paths I would never consider, or paths that look frightening. What I’ve learned throughout my academic career thus far, is that even if the path beyond is daunting, with twists and turns and scraggly branches about, that doesn’t mean I should turn away. Everything I’ve learned until the moment I cross through that new door has prepared me for the challenges ahead of me. So, I pull up my boot straps and start my next journey. I’ve tried to keep this mindset when encountering new opportunities. My entire academic life, I’ve had the dream of becoming a veterinarian, and that’s the path I’ve decided to pursue. In high school, I took AP Research and I had never felt more intimidated than I had in that class. I had never conducted research before (besides small science fair projects) and I had no idea what I wanted to do! This was one of those paths my education and love of science had opened for me that looked daunting. I wasn’t so sure I wanted to traverse down that road, but I took a deep breath and started the class tentatively. I ended up researching shared bacteria between human owners and their dogs, and it opened up a whole new world. It opened up a part of STEM I never would have even considered if I hadn't taken that leap of faith. Now, I know that I have a deep passion for research, and that I want to conduct research in college and possibly become a veterinarian in academia. Following my first ever semester of college, I am happy to say that next semester I will be researching for class credit in a meat sciences laboratory! If I hadn’t taken that risk my junior year by spending hours coming up with a project and time working at Emory University, I never would have found my love for research and my determination to include it in my future career. Education has always provided a gateway down a new path for me to conquer and I’m thankful that it’s allowed me to have the confidence to take on these new experiences as they appear. With these new paths my education has opened up to me, I know there are ten more waiting for me down the road as I continue to push myself. From researching in high school, to researching in college and beyond, my education is the reason I am now dancing through these new gateways—even if they’re terrifying—so I can become the best veterinarian I can possibly be.
    Bold Moments No-Essay Scholarship
    Walking into the research lab for the first time, all I felt were a million butterflies pounding against my chest. “What if I’m not good enough? I’m only a Freshman” I thought. I was terrified that my lack of experience would make the graduate students turn me away. I took a deep breath and crossed the barrier into the lab, ready to learn anything and everything about their research in muscle biology. A month later, and I’ve and gained confidence as a woman in STEM I’ve never held before, just by being bold and taking that first step into research.
    Cyber Monday Prep Scholarship
    Supporting small businesses or ethical companies is important to me, and I keep this in mind when shopping online. Sure, Amazon is a great place to buy millions of items for cheap, but ask yourself, is the way they treat their customers okay? Because of employee treatment and issues of fast fashion—clothes made unethically and unsustainably—I try not to support brands like Amazon or Shien. One online brand I love is Etsy! I often want to find hand-made, unique gifts and Etsy has just that. From earrings to posters, I can find anything I want and support small business owners while I’m at it, instead of faceless companies. The second place I love to shop online at is Target. Though this is a big company, they have morals I support. Target pushes diverse commercials, supports LGBTQIA+ patrons, and has inclusivity missions. In fact, over the next three years, Target plans to increase its amount of POC inclusion by 20%. The last place I love to shop online is my local grocery store. During the pandemic, I can get groceries safely without exposure to myself or others. And, I can still buy organic or locally grown produce when I can!
    Pettable Pet Lovers Annual Scholarship
    Puppy dog eyes and puppy dog love are what comes to mind when I look at these four pictures. Wendy, my short lil' rescue, and Rosie my grandma's Bernese mountain dog are best friends. Not only do they both give the best puppy dog eyes you will ever see (ugh, give them a treat already!), they also love laying—or rolling—on the couch together. If they're not showing off their eyes, snuggling with me, or laying on the couch, they can often be found wrapped up like pigs in a blanket, being absolutely spoiled rotten. @maddiee.sullivann
    Support Small Businesses Scholarship
    When I think of small businesses, hardships come to mind. I immediately picture the Great Recession of 2007-2009. I think about how that even though I was only 7 then, I can still distinctly remember my parents murmuring in the kitchen—other times yelling—about what we were going to do. How we were going to survive. Nine was too young to see the risks involved with small businesses, yet I understood them at that age all too well. My dad is a lawyer who owns his own individual law firm. Though we are not in the same financial place we were during the Great Recession, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a lot of small business owners and families like mine to start worrying again. Not as many people are calling, traversing to the family-owned store down the road, or going out. Due to these effects of COVID-19, 60% of small businesses closing because of the pandemic are closing permanently. Even though I am aware of the lows in owning your own business, I also see the high points, which is why I want to own my own small veterinary practice one day. When picturing a small business, most people think about the quaint bakery around the corner, always smelling of fresh-baked bread. Though these are small businesses, and definitely always have the best-baked goods, professional careers like attorneys and veterinarians can have small businesses as well. In fact, most veterinary clinics are small and locally owned! I want to own my own clinic because it’s important to me to have a personal relationship with the community. Larger owned clinics have less say over payment options, treatment options, and programs for clients. By owning my own clinic, I will be able to work with every client individually and make sure they receive care for their pet tailored to their current situation. In addition to this, one of my goals is to start a program where I provide care to shelter animals for little or no cost. If I worked at a larger clinic like Banfield, there would be corporate restrictions on who I could help in a more personable manner. I want a small business full of control, creativity, and compassion. I want to open my doors to students interested in veterinary medicine, and I want the power to help my community as a whole. I know from seeing the struggles of my father that owning a small business isn’t easy. Though I’m not a business major, I will take any advice my dad can offer me as an owner of a small business for over 25 years. I’ll also listen to other veterinarians who’ve come before me, and take classes pertaining to practice management. I have a long journey ahead of me before I can fulfill this dream, but thinking about all I will be able to achieve with my unique practice fuels my ambition.
    Black Friday Prep Scholarship
    In past years, I’ve been overwhelmed by a massive, nightmare induced, Christmas Tornado. I see a Target ad fly by, a Best Buy Commercial, and then a Sephora newsletter in my inbox! In today’s world, we’re oversaturated with options in the market, and this makes holiday shopping difficult. With so many options, I love using WikiBuy, a browser extension that checks competitor's prices. It’s so helpful that I’ve even found the same gift listed twice on Amazon for a cheaper price. I also love the Consumer’s Report Holiday Gift Guide. Not only is this a reputable source, but it also offers analysis on multiple different items and stores all in one place. From Walmart to more specific gifts like TVs, this resource has an article to help. Though I love technology for holiday shopping, never discredit good ol’ fashioned ads! As a child, I loved circling all the toys I wanted in a catalog, and I am still the same today. Now, I search ads for gifts for my family. Not only is it cathartic to circle with a pen on paper, but it also brings a little bit of that childhood joy back into Christmas shopping.
    Forget Your Student Debt. No-Essay Grant.
    Survey Junkie Brand Influencer No-Essay Scholarship
    500 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship
    WiseGeek Mental Health Well-Being No-Essay Scholarship
    "Fight for Equality" Women in STEM Scholarship
    WayUp Dream Job No-Essay Scholarship
    WiseGeek Lifelong Learners No-Essay Grant
    Penny Hoarder Smart Money No-Essay Scholarship
    Newsette No-Essay Leadership Scholarship for Women
    Hustle Tech & Business News No-Essay Scholarship
    Cappex No-Essay Scholarship
    CollegeXpress No-Essay Scholarship
    1000 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship
    Christian Colleges No-Essay Scholarship No-Essay Community Scholarship
    Smart Borrower No-Essay Scholarship & Loan Forgiveness Grant
    "Be Bold" No-Essay Scholarship