True Blue Testimonials
Justin Debo ’18
Hometown: Normal, Ill.
Major: Double major in Information Systems and Music Business
Activities and organizations: 12 O'clock Percussion Ensemble, Latin Jazz Project, Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra, Millikin University Performance Consulting, MU Percussive Arts Society, Peer Mentor program and volunteer at the Decatur-Macon County Animal Shelter.
Plans after graduation: Either pursue a job in State Farm's Big Data Platforms as a Service Department, or go to graduate school to study Data Science.
Why did you choose to attend Millikin? I thought the percussion program was outstanding and I appreciated the depth of the relationships that students had with their professors.
What does your Millikin education mean to you? My Millikin education gave me the opportunity to break down the stereotypical teacher-student boundaries and engage in intense research projects from a position of mutual respect as partners with faculty. I’ve learned to push past the limits of my comfort zones to learn new skills that I would've thought impossible before.
Why is it important for Millikin to raise funds for student scholarships? Without those scholarships, there is no recognition for the students who continually push their limits to achieve excellence in their academic areas, and far fewer students will be able to afford attending Millikin.
Why is it important for alumni to give back to Millikin in support of student scholarships? There are few places that are going to shape who you become as much as your university. When I graduate, I firmly believe that I will be able to look back and say that I became the person I am thanks to Millikin. But without the scholarships funded by alumni, many students won't have the opportunity to experience that growth, so it is only right that we give back to help share that opportunity.
How has Millikin scholarship support been helpful to you personally? I was a recipient of both merit- and talent-based scholarships as a music major, and without those, I wouldn't have been able to afford Millikin.
Kayleigh Faulkner ’17
Hometown: Davis, Ill.
Major: Communication/PR Track
Activities and organizations: Delta Delta Delta, WJMU, Sapphires Dance Team
Plans after graduation: Hired by City Year and Americorps organization to help facilitate teaching, mentor and after-school programs for an inner-city school district in Chicago.
Why did you choose to attend Millikin? The sense of community that Millikin radiated the moment I stepped on campus is what drew me in. I could tell that faculty and staff truly care about the success of their students. I wanted nothing more than to be a part of that family.
What does your Millikin education mean to you? To me, education is the ability to serve others. I have been given knowledge and skills that I can utilize in service to others.
Why is it important for Millikin to raise funds for student scholarships? It’s important to raise funds so all students can live out what their education means to them. We cannot hinder the success of incredible people because of financial inability.
Why is it important for alumni to give back to Millikin in support of student scholarships? Alumni are the only people who know exactly what it means to be a part of the Big Blue family. Giving that to another person is so rewarding!
How has Millikin scholarship support been helpful to you personally? Millikin scholarship support has been incredibly important to me because it has taken the financial burden away and allowed me to focus on my four years here. I have been able to join organizations and get the most out of my education because of the help of a scholarship.
What has been the best thing about your personal Big Blue journey? The best part about my personal journey has been simply the growth I have seen in myself. Because of Millikin's Performance Learning, I feel absolutely ready to enter the "adult world." I have grown in my leadership skills, problem solving, and working with others.
In your own words, please say thank you to the donors who give to the True Blue Scholarship Challenge. I am beyond thankful for the generosity of all donors for not only me but everyone at the Big Blue. Thank you for your kindness and your desire to make my education incredible. It's been the best four years of my life.
Krista Scott ’16
Hometown: Born and raised in St. Louis
Major: Mathematics with emphasis on Actuarial Science and minor in Finance
Activities and organizations at MU: Track and Field, President of Sister Circle, Mathematics Club member, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship member, Multicultural Student Council – part of Sister Circle, Long-Vanderburg member and scholarship participant, Alumni and Development student worker (four years), manager and student worker for Phonathon, Admission office worker and tour guide.
Current job position: Account Executive (Underwriter) for Travelers Inland Marine Insurance
How did your Millikin education prepare you for your career? Millikin prepared me for real life situations that I use every day in my career: Team projects, individual projects, speaking/presentations, Excel proficiency, problem solving, deadlines, etc. Every class counted, whether it applied to my degree or not.
Why did you choose to attend Millikin? Like many, I chose Millikin because I was looking for a small class size and inspiring environment for my degree. I knew that Actuarial Science was going to be challenging and I needed to be able to have access to my professors for questions and help outside of the classroom. To my surprise, I received much more than what I was asking for. Every professor I had was passionate in what they were teaching and almost all had a door open any time.
What does your Millikin education mean to you? My Millikin education means everything to me and I’m so proud of myself. The achievements I accomplished wouldn’t have been made possible without the help of professors and other staff. I truly believe that I wouldn’t have the career I have today without Millikin. Plus, it makes a great conversation starter because not a lot of people know about Millikin in Decatur, Ill.
Why is it important for Millikin to raise funds for student scholarships? There’s a sacrifice and price for pursuing your dreams and goals, but when you get the financial assistance and support like Millikin has done for me, it makes it all worth it. Although I still had to work while in school, having scholarships gave me such a relief and a lot off my shoulders to focus on my education and plans after graduation. I had opportunities to talk to successful people that all had a helping hand for me after graduation.
Why is it important for alumni to give back to Millikin in support of student scholarships? We received the help at one point; it’s time that we give back. Am I currently working on my student loans? Yes! But I have a little extra to give back because I wouldn’t even be in the career I am today without Millikin. I was so grateful for the scholarships I received, because I was taught that nothing is ever guaranteed.
How has Millikin scholarship support been helpful to you personally? Financial assistance is something every student needs and wants. It doesn’t matter who you are or what background you come from. But the scholarship support was, personally, more emotional and inspiring. I was fortunate to attend multiple scholarship dinners where I actually met some of my donors. They wanted to know about me, what my plans were and even gave some advice. I was utterly inspired by the success and gratitude I saw in the donors and I wanted nothing more than to be coming back to Millikin, after graduation, as a donor.
Anything else? Look, we all have our own lives to live, family to take care of and other personal matters and sometimes we just don’t have the time or the money to give back. But a donor once gave me a scholarship, no matter how big or small, that made some type of impact in my life. So I’m going to help another student fortunate receive some assistance, as it should be a never-ending cycle to help the next Millikin alumni.