May 4th Legacy Scholars
May 4th Legacy Scholars for AY 2020-21
Special recognition goes to four students who were selected to receive the first May 4th Legacy Scholarships, awarded in the fall for the 2020-21 academic year. The May 4th Legacy Scholarship Program was established by Kent State University in 2020, and provides four scholarships to be given to students majoring in our Peace and Conflict Studies program. Each scholarship bears the name of one of the students killed (Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Scheuer and William Schroeder) to serve as a lasting testament to their lives and presence at Kent State.
Deborah, born and raised in Brazil, has been active both in her home country and in the US in working for social and environmental justice and human rights. Since coming to Kent State and learning more about May 4, she feels a deep connection to the students who were there in 1970. When attending protests, both here and in her native Brazil, Deborah says, “every single time, I keep thinking that I would be there 50 years ago; it could have been me.” While at Kent State, Deborah has interned with the International Institute of Akron and continues to work with the Office of Global Initiatives at Kent State Stark. She recently served as moderator for the virtual public talk given by Nobel Peace Laureate Rigoberta Menchú Tum on Friday, April 30, and was actively involved in organizing and facilitating the PeaceJam conference on Saturday, May 1, as well as assisting with other events over the past few years. As Deborah explains, “I want to use the privilege that I have to pursue my academic studies in the United States to give a voice to those that need to be heard, and to create a peaceful change in all the communities that I am or have been a part of, in Brazil, the U.S or any other country through activism and nonviolence.”
Deborah expects to graduate in Spring 2021 with her BA in Peace and Conflict Studies.
Jeremy is a nontraditional student who transferred to Kent State in Fall 2020 after earning a certificate in Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies from Cuyahoga Community College. Growing up, Jeremy learned about May 4 from his parents, and was profoundly impacted. Jeremy explains, “The events of May 4th, 1970 are forever in my mind because my parents were on campus” the day before the shootings. He goes on to say, “The Vietnam War was a very real part of my family’s history, both as we had relatives serving but also my parents losing many friends. The day holds a deep cultural significance as well to my life as a kid growing up in Ohio, who was drawn into the social justice areas of life. “ As a result, Jeremy has a long history of activism over the years, stating that “as an adult I have committed myself to peace, through direct action, creative process, and educating myself.“
Jeremy is a junior majoring in Peace and Conflict Studies with a minor in Creative Writing.
Margi Straub has a passion for communication and connecting with others, and found that the School of Peace and Conflict Studies provided the perfect channel for her to further develop those skills. As she explains, “… my major has taught me that at the core of communication are the values of human connection, human needs, human rights, and social justice.“ During her time here at Kent State she has been actively involved in helping with many of the School of Peace and Conflict Studies’ events (including recruiting new students) and co-founded the student organization Peace and Conflict Students (PACS). “I am honored and excited to now be the president of this organization and I work diligently to promote peace, activism, and education through this organization’s events.” Margi’s leadership skills have not gone unnoticed. In Spring 2020, she received the Ohio Peace and Conflict Studies Network Leader Recognition Award, and she has been selected to received the A&S Distinguished Student Leader award for the School of Peace and Conflict Studies this year. Margi plans to go into human resource management with a focus on labor relations.
Margi expects to graduate in Spring 2021 with her BA in Applied Conflict Management (and a minor in Human Resource Management).
Lucas Steinkamp is driven by a desire to help others. As a Peace and Conflict Studies major, he was initially interested in entering the ministry, and says, “When I came to Kent, I was already seeking to live a life that fostered peace.“ During his time in college, his career goals shifted, but his commitment to helping others has remained a consistent theme. He worked for the KSU police, held student leader positions at H2O church Kent, and was a member of the Provost Leadership Academy. He interned at Brunswick High School training students in the basics of conflict resolution and building the foundation of a peer mediation program.
Lucas utilized his scholarship in the fall to complete his BA in Applied Conflict Management (with a minor in Criminology and Justice Studies), graduating in December 2020. Lucas is currently preparing to enter paramedic school, and plans to become a Firefighter/Paramedic. As he explains, “My aim is to give peace, to aid those in need and give them someone to talk to in their darkest hours. I want to use my unique position to be an opportunity to bridge between my fellow first responders in blue and the community they serve.”
Congratulations to all four scholarship recipients!