Posted Date: 08/04/2020
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Society today awarded $11,000 in scholarships to six Tulsa-area students enrolled in post-secondary educational institutions for the 2020-21 academic year.
“This year’s applicants were extraordinary, and we received the highest number of applications ever in our organization’s history,” said Pleas Thompson, president of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Society. “We are extremely proud of the six young people who have been singled out for recognition with a scholarship this year. All have big dreams for the future, and showed great maturity in interpreting the relevance of Dr. King’s legacy for today.”
Six scholarships were awarded as follows:
• $3,500 – Servant Leader: Jeremiah Ivey, a graduate of Union High School, attending the University of Missouri – St. Louis and majoring in Finance. He has attended every MLK Parade in Tulsa since he was 5 years old.
• $2,500 – Change Maker: Anika Jallipalli, Union High School, attending the University of Oklahoma, majoring in Biology/Biochemistry. Her ultimate goal is to enter the medical field.
• $1,500 – Mountain of Hope: Kaela Cherie Verner, Cascia Hall Preparatory School, attending Stanford University, Pre-Medicine with Biochemistry major/Marine Biology minor.
• $1,500 – Drum Major of Justice: Jennifer Fiero, Union High School, attending The University of Tulsa, Pre-Medicine/Biology; and
• $1,000 – Beloved Community (TIE – two scholarships awarded): Niara Kwanza, Owasso High School, attending Berklee College of Music (Boston), majoring in Professional Music; and Aja Jackson, Broken Arrow High School, attending Tennessee State University, Biology.
Applicants were evaluated and selected by an independent panel based on the following criteria:
• Academic Achievement: based on the student’s official transcript and grade point average;
• Leadership & Accomplishments: participation in extracurricular activities, honors and awards;
• Work/Volunteer experience;
• Community Involvement; and
• Essay (350-750 words) related to the student’s perceptions of Dr. King’s legacy.
The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Society, Inc. is a Tulsa, Oklahoma-based 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization focused on honoring and preserving the works and ideals that Dr. King practiced. The society has provided programming, leadership development, civic engagement and opportunities for artistic expression involving more than 20,000 boys and girls in Tulsa County and the surrounding area since it was founded in 1978. The Society has awarded $91,000 in scholarships over the past three decades to local high school graduates aspiring to achieve Dr. King’s dream.