By Candice Evans
The Daily Times
SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury University junior Arin Richter, who aspires to become a women's health nurse practitioner, was elated to hear the news that she would be the first-ever recipient of the Lucy Tull Scholarship.
"I felt like it was too good to be true," Richter said. "My entire senior year is being paid for. ... This has been a blessing."
The Ocean City native was one of 1,800 outstanding scholars and student leaders recognized in all areas of academic life at the 81st annual Spring Honors Convocation Friday afternoon. Richter's newly established award was given by Tull--a New York City socialite--who donated a $5.3 million bequest to benefit nursing students in December.
Most of the gift, $4.8 million was designed to benefit students with financial need and the desire to pursue a degree in a medically related field. The remaining $500,000 was given to the new Lucy Nursing Enhancement Fund for faculty development and departmental equipment and supplies.
"I really want to work with the youth and help them with family planning," the 21-year-old said. "I feel like that is an under-served part of the population."
The ceremony--a tradition which dates back to the founding of the university in 1925--was held in the Holloway Hall Auditorium that was seated to capacity.
"We had a little trouble putting all the chairs on our stage," said Ellen Neufeldt, vice president of student affairs. "And if you look at our audience, it's a real testament to see how many students excel at this university."
The colorful ritual included the procession of faculty in full regalia, the pomp and circumstance of the university mace and flag, the SU Chorale and Chamber Choir, and the singing of the Alma Mater.
Neufeldt began the presentation of awards that recognized an overwhelming amount of Dean's List students who were asked to stand. This led into various group awards such as Honor Society, Phi Kappa Phi, Omicron Delta Kappa, that eventually reached a lengthy list of individual recipients that have found success at the university.
Chancellor William E. Kirwan brought greetings from the University System of Maryland to this year's convocation.
"The diversity of the awards and the diversity of those being honored reflects positively of the whole student body," Kirwan said.
Reprinted with permission of The Daily Times