Fifteen high schoolers win Rudd Scholarship to attend WSU


Rudd Scholars 2019

Fifteen Kansas high school seniors have been named as part of the newest class of Rudd Scholars, each receiving a 4-year scholarship to attend Wichita State University.

The scholarships cover all remaining tuition and fees, books and supplies, and room and board.

In addition to living on campus and carrying a full load of classes toward, scholars will receive mentoring and success coaching to help them graduate in four years. They will also participate in many developmental activities outside the classroom, network with leaders in their future professions, build strong relationships among themselves, and serve to help the next generation of scholars through an active and connected alumni association after graduation. 

The 15 incoming Shockers are:

  • Wyatt Abell, Oakley High School
  • Darbee Chard, Chanute High School
  • Wendy De Loera, Wichita East High School
  • Storm Dial, Emporia High School
  • Brady Flesner, Medicine Lodge Jr./Sr. High School
  • Julie Gonzalez-Morales, Sumner Academy of Arts and Science
  • Maria Jimenez, Yates Center High School
  • Brooke Keith, Meade High School
  • Cali Keith, Meade High School
  • Codi Kentner, Quinter High School
  • Kennedi Meiers, West Franklin High School
  • Ronald Michel, Wichita County Jr./Sr. High School
  • David Nevarez-Saenz, Sumner Academy of Arts and Science
  • Lauren O’Donnell, Blue Valley High School
  • Ian Weaver, Hesston High School

In addition, five Kansas students received Rudd Scholarships to attend Emporia State University, and another five will attend Fort Hays State University. The expected value for all 25 winners over four years is $1.4 million. 

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the exceptionally high-caliber, well-rounded students that were chosen for this year’s Rudd Scholarship,” said Peter Najera, president of the Rudd Foundation. “We expect them to maintain their grades and graduate in four years, and in return they will earn their degree debt free.” 

The Rudd Scholarship is earned through a competitive selection process that requires grades, test scores, essays, letters of recommendation, and for the 50 semifinalists a personal interview. The process opened in the fall and drew hundreds of applications from all four corners of the state. 

“Kansas high schools continue to produce very talented young men and women imbued with the Midwestern values of grit, determination and work ethic, and we are excited to make an investment in them through a college education,” said Najera. “These 25 recipients, in addition to the 19 previously selected, brings us to a total of 44 Rudd Scholars in college who will continue to support each other as they are groomed to strengthen the talent pipeline here in Kansas upon graduation.” 

“In just two more years we will have nearly 100 Rudd Scholars on campus learning from one another,” said Najera, “and a few years after that they will all be networking with one another throughout the state as they continue on their trajectory of being positive contributors to our Kansas communities and society as a whole.”

About the Rudd Scholarship

The Rudd Scholarship is a renewable, 4-year program that covers any remaining cost of attendance after all other aid, grants and scholarships are applied to a student’s account. Cost of attendance includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and room and board.

By removing financial barriers to a college education, chosen scholars are expected to achieve a high level of excellence on campus in preparing themselves to be leaders in their profession and in their communities after graduation.

More information can be found, Twitter (@RuddFoundation), Instagram (@ruddfoundation), Facebook (@RuddFoundation) or LinkedIn.