My name is Chelsea Begnaud and I am an alumna of the Alpha Sigma Chapter of Phi Mu at the University of Louisiana. I am very thankful to receive the 2020-2021 Eldridge and Emily Lowe Scholarship. I appreciate the generosity that Phi Mu Foundation has not only shown to me, but to many of my sisters that your scholarship funds have supported over the years.
I am currently a graduate student enrolled in the Master of Professional Science program at the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami. My master’s degree track is concentrated in marine conservation and I am hoping to pursue a career in marine science that focuses on experiential education, outreach, and citizen science. I am an advocate that science is for everyone. I hope to practice this throughout my career by serving as a mentor to young aspiring marine scientists and by creating and promoting opportunities for underrepresented groups in science.
I would like to express my sincerest appreciation for choosing me as the recipient of this scholarship. Graduate school is difficult enough and the financial hardships that accompany the pursuit of higher education can make the experience more overwhelming. I am truly grateful for the kindness of my Phi Mu sisters and the Phi Mu Foundation for providing some relief from that financial burden. This award will assist me through the final year of my master’s program. This upcoming school year I will be interning with Field School in Miami, FL, assisting with shark field research and tropical marine science courses for students. My master’s project will consist of developing the organization’s first science capacity-building program for teachers.
As an aspiring female marine scientist from south Louisiana with little initial and guidance for this career path, getting to this point in my life has presented its challenges. My academic success is, in part, due to kind individuals like yourselves who support women striving to attain an excellent education and continuing to serve our communities, whatever route that may take. To this day, I still carry the values that Phi Mu has instilled in me: to Love myself every step of my life’s journey, Honor those who have encouraged me to follow my dreams, and always live my Truth.
If you want to support women like Chelsea on their path toward success, make a gift to the Foundation today at www.phimufoundation.org/give.