2014 Board of Regents Scholarship Winners

As their brief biographies below illustrate, the 2014 Board of Regents Scholarship winners are a diverse group of men and women who have distinguished themselves through their outstanding academic performance, strong motivation, and exceptional character. They are passionate about their fields of study and are eager to continue their education at University System of Maryland institutions.

Name: Whitney Mangum
Community College Attended: Chesapeake College
USM Institution Enrolled In: Salisbury University
Anticipated Major: Social Work
Long-term Goals: To become a social worker for Hospice.
Scholarship Received: Board of Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
As a non-traditional student, mother and wife, the Board of Regents scholarship has enabled me to continue to attend college full- time and not put an undue financial burden on my family while I reach my goal of becoming a Hospice social worker."



Name: Samuel Damesa
Community College Attended: Montgomery College
USM Institution Enrolled In: UMBC
Anticipated Major: Political Science
Long-term Goals: To pursue a master's and Ph.D. and work in an organization that enables him to provide solutions to those in need.
Scholarship Received: Board of Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar: As a low-income student with a strong passion to continue my education, winning the Board of Regents scholarship covers my financial needs, which have not been covered by federal aid (Pell Grant). I had been distraught about financing the next two years of my undergraduate education, but thanks to the Board of Regents scholarship, now the worry of any financial burden has been lifted off my shoulders. This scholarship has also played a major role in my decision to enroll as a UMBC student. I am very grateful for this scholarship.



Name: Tiffany Biles
Community College Attended: Wor-Wic Community College
USM Institution Enrolled In: Towson University
Anticipated Major: Music education
Long-term Goals: To pursue a master's in music education and teach music.
Scholarship Received: Kelly Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
The Regents Scholarship means the absolute world to me. Earlier this year, I was expecting to attend Towson University with about $12,000 in student loans. The Regents Scholarship gives me the financial security to be able to focus on my school work and not worry about how to pay for my education. It also shows me that the support for the arts is increasing every day. As someone going into music education, I never thought that I would be awarded a scholarship such as this. This award means the world to me, and I can't thank the Board of Regents enough!



Name: Ruth Thomas
Community College Attended: Chesapeake College
USM Institution Enrolled In: UMUC
Anticipated Major: Business Administration
Long-term Goals: To pursue a master's in nonprofit management and perhaps start her own nonprofit organization.
Scholarship Received: Shaeffer Regents Scholarship for Part-Time Students
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
As an adult student working full-time for a non-profit in Maryland, I was overjoyed to receive the Regents Scholarship for part-time transfer students. Receiving this scholarship has allowed me to focus on finishing my education, and to worry less about coming up with the needed funds for classes. I am thankful for this opportunity, and look forward to the challenges ahead.



Name: Amy Middleton
Community College Attended: Community College of Baltimore County
USM Institution Enrolled In: Planning to attend UMBC
Anticipated Major: Psychology
Long-term Goals: To find a job where she can train people, organize events, and pursue her love of international travel.
Scholarship Received: Board of Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
Receiving the Board of Regents Scholarship provides me with the opportunity to obtain a bachelor's degree from UMBC free of financial stress. I know that the value of my degree will allow me to be competitive in the employment market after graduation.



Name: Allen Benton III
Community College Attended: Allegany College of Maryland
USM Institution Enrolled In: Frostburg State University
Anticipated Major: Engineering
Long-term Goals: To find a job that in engineering that he can enjoy day in and day out.
Scholarship Received: Kelly Academic Opportunity Grant
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
Upon leaving Allegany College of Maryland, my biggest concern was financing my way through a university. The Board of Regents "Kelly Academic Opportunity grant" has given me the opportunity to attend Frostburg State University with considerably less financial stress. This grant has given me just what its name implies: an opportunity to receive an education, and with determination on my part, the chance to make my mark on the world.



Name: Valencia Danner
Community College Attended: Prince George's Community College
USM Institution Enrolled In: UMCP
Anticipated Major: Materials science and engineering
Long-term Goals: To become a materials engineer.
Scholarship Received: Kelly Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
My dream is to help sustain and improve the environment by becoming a materials engineer. A challenge I face is not being able to finance my education myself because I come from a low-income household. The Kelly Regents Scholarship is giving me the opportunity to receive the education I otherwise would not be able to afford and helping me achieve my dreams.



Name: LaTonya Williams
Community College Attended: Prince George's County Community College
USM Institution Enrolled In: UMUC
Anticipated Major: Investigative forensics
Long-term Goals: To earn a master's degree at UMUC, get a career in investigative forensics, and own her own business.
Scholarship Received: Kelly Academic Opportunity Grant
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
I am honored to be a recipient of the Kelly Academic Opportunity Grant. Receiving this grant helps minimize my educational debt, so that I can keep pressing forward to continue to shine the light for my family and friends to see and follow.



Name: Silviya Gallo
Community College Attended: Wor-Wic Community College
USM Institution Enrolled In: Salisbury University
Anticipated Major: Mathematics Secondary Education
Long-term Goals: To teach mathematics at the college level.
Scholarship Received: Weinberg Regents Scholarship
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
I am still in disbelief about winning the Weinberg Regents Scholarship. Instead of trying to juggle work and school, I will be able to spend time with my 5- and 1-year-old children. I am also able to instill in them that hard work pays off, and that it is never too late to follow your dreams.



Name: Chris Hovermale
Community College Attended: Hagerstown Community College
USM Institution Enrolled In: UMUC
Anticipated Major: Computer science
Long-term Goals: To complete his bachelor's degree and be as prepared as possible to go into work in industry
Scholarship Received: Kelly Regents Scholarship for Students at the University System of Maryland, Hagerstown
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
Between my mother seeking better employment and our general economic struggles in recent years, my family has been unsure how we could afford college for both myself and my sister. The Regents Scholarship is lifting a huge burden off of our shoulders by ensuring I will receive an education from UMUC without deepening our financial troubles. I will return the favor as best I can by promising to make the most of my education.



Name: Lola Saidkhodjaeva
Community College Attended: Montgomery College
USM Institution Enrolled In: Universities at Shady Grove
Anticipated Major: Nursing
Long-term Goals: To become a nurse practitioner and give back to the United States.
Scholarship Received: Kelly Academic Opportunity Grant
Thoughts on Being a Regents Scholar:
As a first-generation immigrant to the United States, my family is just beginning to establish itself and we often find ourselves struggling to make ends meet as a family. I chose nursing as a career so that I can care for those who are suffering from disease, but I was worried about how I would pursue it without financial support. The Kelly Academic Opportunity Grant is wonderful gift. I humbly accept this opportunity, which will allow me to pursue my professional goals with fewer fears about how I will be able to afford the education I need to attain them .

Interested in applying for a Board of Regents scholarship? Contact the USM Office of Academic Affairs.