Scholarship Success Stories: Samantha McLean
Name: Samantha McLean,
Chapter: Kappa Chapter at The George Washington University
Scholarship Received: Laura Treanor Memorial Scholarship
Current Position/Title: City Planner
"This scholarship not only assisted me financially, but also gave me the reassurance that Phi Sigma Sigma was always going to be a support for me, even if my sisters were geographically far away."
How did your Foundation scholarship impact you and your career?
I received the Laura Treanor Memorial Scholarship when I was in my first year of graduate school. I moved to a new city for school and did not know a soul. This scholarship not only assisted me financially, but also gave me the reassurance that Phi Sigma Sigma was always going to be a support for me, even if my sisters were geographically far away. Also, Laura Treanor and I were in the same new member class. She was part of my Phi Sig experience in so many ways. She was ebullient and full of joy. She was also very smart and motivated. I was thrilled when a scholarship was created in her name to support her Kappa Chapter sisters and I was beyond honored to receive it.
I went to graduate school because I wanted to change careers from international development to urban planning. After graduating with my master's of community planning, I spent a year in Senegal on a Fulbright grant conducting research and then accepted a full-time position as a city planner with the City of Cincinnati.
How has Phi Sigma Sigma impacted you?
I continue to use the skills I gained in leadership positions with Phi Sig. Additionally, it is nice knowing that there is always a support network. Just the other day, I was at a public meeting and I ran into a Phi Sig who went to the University of Cincinnati in the late 1980s! She recognized me from an email (I serve as the CKA for the Iota Tau chapter at Miami University) and said: "Once, Always!" It made my day. I also served in the Peace Corps with a Phi Sig from another chapter, so Phi Sig continued to be a presence in my life even halfway around the world!
What advice would you give today's collegians?
The experiences you are having and the skills you are gaining are not only enhancing your time in college, they'll continue to empower you throughout your lives.