UPS-supported Gap Scholarships crucial for students graduating

Oct 7, 2013

Randy Stashick, vice president of engineering at UPS, recently met with two UPS Gap Scholars on campus.

This year, UPS Gap Scholarships were awarded to six students, enabling them to remain enrolled at Kettering University. Scholarships play a critical role in making Kettering University’s experiential education accessible for many students who could not otherwise afford it, increasing matriculation, retention and graduation rates. Kettering University’s gap scholarships, supported by the UPS Foundation, assist students who are well into their college careers and have found a burdensome ‘gap’ between the costs of education and their ability to pay for it. The gaps usually range from $2,000-$10,000.

Randy Stashick of UPS and the Kettering University Board of Trustees (center) with Payge Woodside (left) and Hoshing Kwong (right).Randy Stashick, vice president of engineering at UPS and a member of the Kettering University Board of Trustees, recently met with two UPS Gap Scholars, Hoshing Kwong and Payge Woodside, on campus.

“UPS has a long standing relationship with Kettering and as a result, we have a great appreciation for the caliber of students that graduate from this University,” Stashick said. “The Gap Scholarship offers a unique opportunity to provide immediate and tangible assistance to students who are on the verge of obtaining an engineering degree, but encounter challenges due to finances. We understand the importance of assisting these students in continuing their education to ensure that we have quality engineers in the pipeline not only for UPS, but for the future of the US.”

Recipients of the UPS Gap Scholarships wrote letters to the UPS Foundation, expressing their gratitude for the vital support. Kiran Vekaria, an Applied Physics major with a concentration in Material Science, has been an outstanding scholar and has been employed as a co-op student with Magna Electronics Inc.

“I have been honored on the Dean’s List for all my academic terms with a 3.86 cumulative GPA,” wrote Vekaria. “In tandem with my academics, I have joined student government and worked with several offices in the school to become involved. Lastly, I have started working with The Children’s Museum, ABC 12 local news and Kettering to start a student scientist local broadcast to gain interest in the STEM fields.” The UPS Gap Scholarship will enable Vekaria to continue to pursue his dreams.

Tyler Hubbert, a senior Mechanical Engineering major, hopes his education will allow him to give back to Kettering students in the future. “Being trusted with such a great scholarship makes me feel very honored and grateful,” Hubbert wrote. “The best thing I can do with the opportunity is take advantage of my position and learn as much as possible so I can be in a similar position and give back to another individual in need.”

The UPS Foundation has donated nearly $1 million in support of Kettering University and its students. This year, the UPS Foundation awarded Kettering University a $40,000 grant, which includes $12,000 for UPS Gap Scholarships, $18,000 for the Academically Interested Minds (AIM) program and $10,000 for other scholarships.

In conjunction with the scholarship support made possible by the UPS Foundation, Kettering University facilitated 2,088 Scholar Assistance Awards in 2013. Kettering University plans to launch a scholarship fund to further assist students like Kiran Vekaria and Tyler Hubbert by keeping them at Kettering. This fall, alumni and friends will be invited to contribute to the Keep Me Kettering Scholarship Fund which will help provide unrestricted support for incoming and returning students who are enduring financial duress.