Equal opportunity equals experience
“I couldn’t afford an expensive school,” says Rachel Warner, a senior majoring in business management and design. “Iowa State University provides great quality, and it’s less expensive than other places. With the addition of scholarships, I was able to come here.”
Thanks to dedicated alumni and friends who contributed to Forever True, For Iowa State, more students like Rachel will not only be able to access an Iowa State education, but also participate in more of the experiential learning opportunities that make students’ education so exceptional.
Rachel says scholarships like the Josh and Ruth Sherman Business Scholarship she received allow her to worry less about finances and spend more time studying and getting involved in campus activities. Trying everything from yoga to improv, the self-described non-techie stuck with Cyclone Rocketry, a club that builds and launches rockets.
“As public relations chair, I interview people, write reports and translate scientific information to the public. It’s an opportunity to do something out of my comfort zone and learn things I can apply to other areas,” Rachel says.
Club president and Dennis Muilenburg Scholarship recipient William Burken agrees. “As a freshman I thought, ‘I know what I’m doing.’ Cyclone Rocketry taught me things I didn’t know I should know, like leadership, collaboration and how to learn as I go.”
The club was started by students who were learning about rockets in class and wanted to experiment with their own ideas. Now members follow a yearly design process to manufacture and fly high-powered rockets.
The highlight of the year is competing in Spaceport America, the world’s largest intercollegiate rocket competition. But not every student can afford the week-long trip. Donors to FundISU, the Iowa State University Foundation’s crowdfunding platform, help ensure these students can go – and help students like William and Rachel realize their dreams.
“Getting ready to leave Iowa State, I realize how amazing it all was,” William says. “It makes me want to give back someday.”
Also planning to graduate in May 2022, Rachel completed a business management internship over the summer. She hopes to someday to integrate business with her love for design, perhaps as an art director. She’s also considering pursuing an MBA.
“I see a lot happening in my future,” she says.