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Emilee's Scholarship Grows

by Bobby Blair
April 19, 2018

Friends of Westfield State University,

Established in 2017 by the Honors Program, the Ely Library, and the Westfield State University Departments of Art, World of Language Studies, and Ethnic and Gender Studies, the Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship honors alumna Emilee Dawn Gagnon ’13 who passed away on September 23, 2013 while on a cross country cycling trip to benefit Multiple Sclerosis.

Well-known on campus for her rainbow-colored hair, artistic flair, and expert hula-hooping skills, Emilee lit up the room. She was a vibrant and inspiring presence at Westfield State University,. An art major with a concentration in art history and minors in French and women’s gender studies, Emilee was a Commonwealth Honors Scholar who completed a senior honors project entitled, “Revolutionary Beauty: Five Contemporary Women Artists Challenges to the Western Canon.”

A feminist who championed human, environmental, and animal rights passionately, Emilee combined her personal values and interests with her academic work. The Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship is awarded annually to a student who embodies Emilee’s core characteristics. Each year, as the scholarship committee reviews application essays, we see anew how Emilee’s passionate engagement in education continues to inspire students who follow in her footsteps.

Since 2014 we have held numerous tribute and fundraising events to honor Emilee’s legacy at WSU and to benefit the Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship fund. These include:

We aim to grow the fund for the Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship so that we can continue tin perpetuity to support future students through this permanent tribute to Emilee’s spirit. This HOOT day, please consider helping us reach this goal with a donation to the Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship is stewarded through the Westfield State Foundation, Inc.

Here’s the link: https://www.westfieldalumni.org/GiveAHoot

Any amount helps. Thank you!

Vanessa Diana, Professor of English, Assistant Director of the Honors Program, Chair, Emilee Dawn Gagnon Memorial Scholarship Committee

 

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