Six Outstanding Horatio Alger Scholars Awarded Dennis Washington Leadership Graduate Scholarships

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In partnership with the Horatio Alger Association, the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation provides scholarships of up to $120,000 to Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars who wish to pursue masters, professional, or doctoral degrees

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Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, Inc., a nonprofit educational organization honoring the achievements of remarkable individuals and encouraging youth to pursue their dreams through higher education, announced the six recipients of the 2020 Dennis Washington Leadership Graduate Scholarship. Endowed in 2008 and funded by the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation in partnership with the Horatio Alger Association, the scholarship provides financial assistance to Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars who aspire to obtain graduate, professional, or doctoral degrees in business, engineering, law, medicine, applied sciences or education. Since 2008, the program has awarded more than $5 million in scholarships. In 2020, the six recipients will be eligible to receive up to $120,000 each.

The Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation was established in 1988 by Dennis Washington, chairman emeritus of the Horatio Alger Association, and his wife, Phyllis. The Foundation, which supports deserving individuals in an effort to better society as a whole, established its Leadership Graduate Scholarship program to provide financial assistance exclusively to Horatio Alger undergraduate scholarship recipients who are committed to obtaining a graduate degree. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and have exemplified leadership, integrity and perseverance in overcoming personal adversity. They should also exhibit a passion for entrepreneurship and a commitment to community service.

“For over 25 years, we have been avid supporters of the Horatio Alger Association and its mission to help deserving young people in pursuit of their dreams through higher education,” said Phyllis Washington, co-founder, the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation and chair of the selection committee for this scholarship. “This year’s recipients are catalysts for change in their communities, and we are thrilled to help these inspiring Alumni Scholars achieve their goals.”

The following Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars will receive up to $120,000 each in their pursuit of a master’s, doctoral or professional degree:

  • Omid Cohensedgh, Columbia University, Doctor of Medicine, 2016 National Scholar
  • Joseph Dakki, Oakland University, Doctor of Medicine, 2015 Michigan State Scholar
  • Andrew Murphy, Loyola Marymount University, Doctorate in Educational Leadership, 2005 Kentucky State Scholar
  • Mahika Phutane, Cornell University, Doctor of Philosophy, Computer Science, 2015 British Columbia Scholar
  • Itka Safir, University of Chicago, Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration, 2011 New York State Scholar
  • Brook Thompson, Stanford University, Doctor of Philosophy, Environmental Engineering, 2014 Oregon State Scholar

“The ongoing support from the Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation provides Horatio Alger Alumni Scholars the opportunity to continue their educational aspirations,” said Terrence J. Giroux, executive director, Horatio Alger Association. “We are grateful for Dennis and Phyllis’ unwavering generosity and look forward to witnessing all that these Alumni Scholars will accomplish in the years to come.”

Since the establishment of its scholarship programs in 1984, more than 27,000 students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada have received more than $180 million in scholarships for undergraduate, graduate and technical studies. In 2000, 16 years after the establishment of its National Scholarship Program, the Association began funding scholarships concentrated in each state to further its mission of assisting deserving young people to pursue higher education. Additionally, Horatio Alger Members fund a series of Specialized Scholarships, which target students attending specific academic institutions or pursuing certain degree programs.

For more information about the Horatio Alger Association, please visit http://www.horatioalger.org or follow the organization on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans:
Founded in 1947, the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, Inc. is dedicated to the simple but powerful belief that hard work, honesty and determination can conquer all obstacles. The Association honors the achievements of outstanding leaders who have accomplished remarkable successes in spite of adversity by bestowing upon them the Horatio Alger Award and inducting them as lifetime Members. Horatio Alger Members support promising young people with the resources and confidence needed to overcome adversity in pursuit of their dreams through higher education. Through the generosity of its Members and friends, in 2019, the Association awarded more than $21 million in undergraduate and graduate need-based scholarships to 2,500 students across the United States and Canada, and provided college support and mentoring services to its Scholars. Since 1984, the Association has awarded more than $180 million in college scholarships to more than 27,000 deserving students. For more information, please visit http://www.horatioalger.org.

About Dennis & Phyllis Washington Foundation:
Founded in 1988, the Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation is the major philanthropic organization for The Washington Companies and the Washington family. Funding for the Foundation comes primarily from personal contributions from the Washington Family and profits of The Washington Companies. The Foundation focuses in the areas of education, arts and culture, health and human services, and community service. The Foundation website is located at http://www.dpwfoundation.org.

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