Suggs Scholarship supporting Aubrey Logan as he begins chasing long-range dreams
Aubrey Logan is only a couple months into his freshman year at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, but he already has some goals in mind after he completes his degree.
The Vashon High School graduate knows he wants to take part in the Teach for America program, so he might support and inspire future students – the way his high school chemistry teacher did for him.
Later, he’s planning to go to medical school and get advanced training in behavioral neuroscience with an eye on improving the general understanding of how brain structure affects its function and can explain its behavior.
Those pursuits start with Logan finishing college, an opportunity he’s receiving with the support of the Dr. Donald Suggs Scholarship.
“For me, it means the world,” said Logan, who is majoring in anthropology. “Getting the scholarship made the decision, not only where I was going to but if I was going to college. If I didn’t have any financial aid, I wouldn’t be able to.”
The scholarship is named in honor of Suggs, a philanthropist, dental surgeon and executive editor of The St. Louis American. He was a founding member of UMSL’s Chancellor’s Council in 1979, was awarded an honorary degree in humane letters in 1993 and helped raise funds for the Marguerite Ross Barnett Memorial Plaza, which was built in 2012.
The Suggs Scholarship was established to attract talented St. Louis students who hail from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds. Recipients must be Pell Grant-eligible and meet two of three requirements: rank in the top 10 percent of their high school classes, have a cumulative high school GPA of at least 3.5 and score 26 or higher on the ACT.
The scholarship provides $12,000 towards tuition and fees for 30 credit hours per academic year with additional funding of $1,000 each semester for books and supplies.
“We had a solid pool of applicants for the Donald Suggs Scholarship this year,” said Alan Byrd, who recently left his position as UMSL’s vice provost of enrollment management. “Aubrey rose to the top of the pack because of his academic record and community involvement. He was an accomplished student leader at Vashon High School, and he received glowing recommendations from his teachers and principal. The selection committee was very impressed with his personal story and felt that he would be a great addition to our student body.”
Logan had partial scholarships offers at other Missouri state schools, but he was encouraged to give UMSL a look.
A school secretary helped connect him with Byrd, who talked through potential financial aid opportunities, including the Suggs Scholarship.
When Logan found out in March that he’d received the scholarship, his college decision became simple.
“The scholarship was better from UMSL, and I wanted to stay closer to home,” Logan said.
His first semester has required some adjustments. He’s had to adapt to virtual learning with one of his classes meeting in person one day a week and the rest fully online because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was a blessing and a curse that Logan had completed all of his required credits last spring when the Vashon shifted to remote classes.
“I definitely wish I would have had to do it last spring,” he said of taking virtual classes. “At this point, I’m trying to catch up from what happened during the adjustment period, but it’s not extremely overwhelming.”
The St. Louis American Foundation recognized Logan and other local scholarship recipients at its 33rd annual Salute to Excellence in Education Scholarship Awards Program, held virtually on Friday night. Below is a video recorded with Chancellor Kristin Sobolik for the event.
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