Tasnah Moyer, a sophomore who is majoring in world religions with a minor in business and psychology, has been named winner of the Kenneth Gray and Lancy Gray Memorial Scholarship, the University of Bridgeport announced today.
The scholarship was established by Dr. Kenneth and Mrs. Doris Gray to honor their daughter Lancy, who passed away in 2000. It is awarded each year to an undergraduate student who demonstrates an interest in promoting intercultural and interreligious understandingâa subject that deeply inspired the late Ms. Gray.
To be considered for the scholarship, candidates must submit a 600-word essay about promoting intercultural and interreligious understanding among various cultures, be in good academic standing, and demonstrate financial need.
Essays were judged in a “blind” review by a faculty panel, and while “all were inspiring…it was Tasnah’s thoughts that most touched the reviewers,” said International College Dean Thomas Ward.
“Tasnah has lived in Russia, the United States, and in Central America. She has also spent time in Asia. Her international experiences and her embracing nature make her an excellent example of what Lancy Gray and her father Kenneth Gray most appreciated in life,” Ward said.
Dr. Gray was a trustee of the University of Bridgeport and a senior Fulbright Fellow at Al Akhawayn University in Morocco. He served as professor for international business at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee. Dr. Gray passed away in spring 2007 and was recognized as a man deeply committed to intercultural understanding, and as an example of academic and personal integrity.
Lancy Gray spoke German, English, French, and Arabic. By age 15, she had attended schools in Kenya, the United States, Germany, and Morocco and hoped to study cultural anthropology and world religions.
Moyer, 23, is secretary of the Student Government Association, or SGA, and works as a tutor and a teaching assistant in the psychology department. She was inspired to apply for the scholarship she said, because she identified with Lancy Gray’s well-traveled international upbringing and fascination with different cultures and religions.
“I felt I was on the same track. Her interests are the things I value, so I’m very grateful to have won the scholarship,” said Moyer, adding that her childhood, spent in Russia, El Salvador, and in the tiny community of Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania, “instilled in me an appreciation, and in many ways, a love for cultures that are different than my own.”
“I think humanity has so much more in common than what’s different. I really believe that it’s personal experiences and intimate relationships that are the key to cultivating communication and bridging barriers.”
Moyer graduated from Boyertown Area Senior High School in Pennsylvania.
Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, firstname.lastname@example.org