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Celebrating 100 years with MSU Texas: Priddy Scholars

Published: Jun. 9, 2022 at 4:05 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - News Channel 6 is celebrating a century with Midwestern State University, and we’re continuing our tribute to the university’s past, present and future with the Priddy Foundation Scholars Program.

Since 2017, the program has provided scholarships for first-generation college students and supported them throughout their academic careers.

“Once you take the financial burden off of the student, they’re literally able to integrate themselves into the college experience and have the most opportunity for growth,” Joshua Ysasi, Priddy Scholars coordinator, said.

“When I came in as a freshman, I really didn’t think I would be involved in leading anything,” Mikaela Inderman, a Priddy Scholar, said. “And the program has really just given me a place to grow and blossom and really key into my strengths and learn how to, you know, work around my weaknesses.”

Priddy Scholars help with all sorts of events in the community, including Hotter’N Hell Hundred, University Kiwanis Club Pancake Festival and MSU-Burns Fantasy of Lights.

“It’s not a joke to sit here saying that if there’s an event going on, on campus, somehow, some way a Priddy scholar has most likely been involved with the planning and implementation of that event,” Ysasi said.

The program also helps students prepare for future academic endeavors.

“Being on a research project really boosted my resume for when I applied to graduate programs,” Inderman said. “And it’s kind of twofold in how it’s prepared me for that. One is, you know, personally and educationally. You know, I’ve really grown into a leader and somebody who feels like I can actually take on graduate school.”

Even after graduation, Priddy Scholars are making a difference in the community.

“If you look at what Priddy scholars have done after graduated, you’ll notice that a lot of them are teaching in Burkburnett, or they’re teaching in Bowie, they’re teaching in Wichita Falls, they’ve come back to MSU and become employees at MSU,” Ysasi said.

“We are basically trying to keep our talent, you know what I mean, and our skilled and highly educated individuals in the area and really just kind of boost that retention for Wichita Falls,” Ysasi said.

“When I first visited MSU, it just felt like home to me the campus size, the small class sizes,” Inderman said. “Just the second I stepped on campus. Everyone was so friendly, so welcoming. It just really was somewhere I could see myself for four years and I kind of already fell in love with it. And then when I got the opportunity for the Priddy scholarship, it just kind of sealed the deal. That that really was the place I was supposed to be.”

All MSU Texas centennial celebration stories can be found by clicking here.

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