Office of Merit Scholarships, Fellowships & Awards

Alumni Class Gift Scholars

Class of 1954 Achievement Awards

Sponsored by the University of Washington Alumni Class of 1954 in honor of their 50th Class Reunion, the Class of 1954 Achievement Scholarship will be awarded to outstanding students in their junior or senior year at the University of Washington (UW) who, by their achievements and goals, enrich society and themselves.

2016-2017 Scholars:

Diana Gil-Vargas

Junior, Community, Environment and Plannings major

Diana Gil-Vargas is a transfer student from Yakima Valley College (YVC) and is currently a junior studying to earn her BA in Community, Environment and Planning (CEP) at the UW. Her focus within CEP is to learn about the intersectionality of the built environment, the social structures, and diverse groups of people of the environment. She hopes to one day become and urban planner to help address the environmental and social inequities underrepresented communities of color face. As a future planner, she hopes to create safe, accessible and sustainable spaces for all people.

Along with her interest in education, Diana is passionate about community engagement because she enjoys engaging with community members and learning about different communities’ histories. Her interests in community development and the environment have led her to work with different organizations. Diana was an intern for the Latino Community Fund (LCF) where she outreached to the Latino communities in Beacon Hill and South Park to inform the residents about Seattle’s Equity and Environment Agenda. The informational sessions helped residents engage in dialog about equity, sustainability and safety while being able to raise concerns and suggests about the changes they wish to see in their communities. Diana is eager to continue working in community development and engagement opportunities.

Elizabeth Purdy

Junior, Social Welfare major

Elizabeth Purdy is a Social Welfare major at the University of Washington School of Social Work. Elizabeth focuses on working with immigrant and refugee populations and is a current volunteer for the Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) in their after school program. She loves learning about other cultures and spent a year and a half as a volunteer English teacher in a remote village in Darjeeling District, India. She has a passion for language learning and is currently studying Hindi and Urdu as a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellow for Hindi. She was awarded the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) last summer for Hindi, and is a CLS Alumni Ambassador.

This summer, she will be studying Nepali language as a FLAS Fellow at Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Kathmandu, Nepal. While there, she plans to promote international understanding by setting up a penpal relationship between students in Kathmandu and students in Seattle.



Class of 1957 Scholar Award

The Class of 1957 Scholar Award is sponsored by the UW Alumni Class of 1957 to provide scholarship support to outstanding undergraduate students at the University of Washington who demonstrate high academic merit and financial need.

2016-2017 Scholar:

Jae Kim

Junior, Social Welfare major

My name is Jae Kim and I am majoring in social work because it trains us how to assist and counsel people professionally, and would give me the opportunity to work with individuals.

After getting my BASW/MSW, I want to become a transition specialist. A transition specialist is someone who helps students with disabilities by supporting them and assisting them to prepare for their post high school program. They also can work in a college setting.

I would like to make pathways for students with disabilities so that they can reach their maximum potential in school and life.



Class of 1962 Endowed Scholarship

The Class of 1962 Endowed Scholarship was developed to commemorate the 1962 alumni’s collective experience at UW. Their generous gifts fund this scholarship in honor of their 50th Reunion and the 150th Anniversary of UW! The Class of 1962 Endowed Scholarship provides financial assistance to current undergraduate students at the University of Washington. Students eligible to receive support from this endowment must be Washington State residents with demonstrated academic merit, leadership and service. The donors to this endowment, members of the University of Washington Class of 1962, wish to fund “the gap”: the growing number of middle-class students, many of whom do not qualify for federal funding or Husky Promise and must take out student loans and work full- or part-time to support their education.

2016-2017 Scholar:

Clara Manahan

Junior, Political Science; Law, Societies & Justice majors

Clara Manahan is a junior studying Law, Societies, and Justice and Communications. Born and raised in Seattle, Clara has always been interested in how cities function and the ways that politics, education, and government institutions impact individual lives. Before beginning at the University of Washington, she knew that she wanted to serve others—she just didn’t yet know how. Now, Clara’s academic interests focus on criminal justice, the school-to-prison pipeline, and how media shapes public consciousness. She has come to find an incredible home in the Law, Societies, and Justice program and is constantly challenged to think more critically about how to make the world we live in a more loving and just place.

Clara is also involved on and off campus in a variety of ways. She is a member of Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, Mortar Board Honor Society, and Huskies for Opportunities in Prison Education (HOPE). In her time at UW, she has helped conduct research on the juvenile justice system in King County and currently serves as a volunteer with University Beyond Bars at the Monroe Correctional Complex. She truly believes in the transformative power of education and is happy to be part of a community that encourages lifelong learning.

In her free time, Clara can be found reading (for fun), grabbing coffee with her family, or taking a walk with friends. She loves History Channel documentaries and doesn’t mind if everyone knows it. She loves hearing people’s stories and earnestly hopes that her future career will allow her to keep learning, challenge systems of injustice, and help people.