Published February 20, 2014
Before Kwasi Adusei applied for the J. Scott Fleming Scholarship, he knew exactly how he would use the award: donate it to the Buffalo Humane Society.
Adusei, a nursing and psychology major, helped raise funds for the organization to build an animal shelter in Buffalo as a part of the national service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega. Inspired by the society’s work, he made a personal pledge to donate $500 to the organization and did everything he could to raise the money, even applying for scholarships.
“The Buffalo Humane Society is a cause that is underrepresented,” says Adusei, who has served as project manager for more than a dozen community service missions. “There are a lot of causes out there that aren’t in the spotlight that people don’t typically think to donate to. It’s important we give those organizations support as well.”
Adusei is only one of four selfless students to win the Fleming scholarship, a $500 student-to-student scholarship awarded by the UB Alumni Association (UBAA) to recognize recipients for their leadership efforts through extracurricular and volunteer activities.
The UBAA awards $8,000 in scholarships every year to a handful of students. The awards are presented at an annual scholarship dinner that is attended by faculty, staff and student leaders, including President Satish Tripathi.
“The UB Alumni Association is so fortunate to be able to provide scholarships to students,” says Carol Gloff, UBAA president. “We love making an impact on their lives with some financial assistance. What they may not know, however, is that we benefit as well from the pride of connecting with such a talented group of alumni-in-training.”
Also receiving 2014 Fleming scholarship are Tyler Bauer, a senior psychology major; Hui Kee Lee, a junior mathematics major; and David Harary, a junior economics and international trade major.
Harary, who used his award to travel to Brussels, Belgium, over winter break to participate in a model European Union, is an economic research aide for the Food Systems Planning and Healthy Communities Lab under Samina Raja, associate professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning, School of Architecture and Planning.
Although he joined the lab with little understanding of food security — characterized by the availability of healthy food — he quickly recognized how significant the problem was in the United States. The issue affects 17 million Americans, says Harary. He plans to use a career in politics to improve food security and help alleviate hunger in the U.S.
Other scholarships include the Alumnae Scholarship, a $1,500 award given to female students for their academic and extracurricular accomplishments. The recipients are Jessica Utzig, a biomedical engineering graduate student, and Lee, who also received a Fleming scholarship.
The Willie R. Evans UBAA Legacy Scholarship assists UB students who are children or grandchildren of UB alumni who are members of the alumni association. This year’s recipients — who each received $1,500 — are Angelina Bruno, a junior English major, and Christ Ange Katche, a pharmaceutical science major.