LEAD Scholars, Donors Network During Meet and Greet Event

The event also celebrated the 15th anniversary of the LEAD Scholars program.
By Jeremy Carroll


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A student laughs when shown something on a cell phone from another student
Students and donors were able to chat and network during the annual Meet and Greet event on Nov. 3. Photos by Monique Wooley

LEAD Scholars and program donors mingled and networked at the annual Meet and Greet event at the William Moore Trotter Multicultural Center on Nov. 3.

The event also celebrated the 15th anniversary of the LEAD Scholars program. The program offers merit-based scholarships and empowering community support to admitted underrepresented minority students who exemplify the program’s four pillars: leadership, excellence, achievement, and diversity. Including the current cohort of Scholars, there have been more than 750 LEAD Scholars since 2008.

“I didn’t know what I was in for when I applied for the scholarship, I was simply looking for additional financial aid. But LEAD has become a piece of home away from home,” said LEAD Scholar Sophia Severance. “LEAD has given me multiple opportunities to foster my skills in leadership and created numerous memories that I cherish.”

She said she’s amazed by the passions and aspirations of her fellow LEAD Scholars.

Gwen Handleman, ’68, JD’81, a LEAD Scholars program donor, said she started giving to LEAD because expanding access to a U-M education is a means to combat inequality in our country that is rooted in bigotry.

She said the program inspires gifted and talented students to pursue the same U-M education that her and her family have benefited from.

“As I’ve come to appreciate, LEAD has improved the quality of a Michigan education,” she said.

Jeremy Carroll is the content strategist for the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan.

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