Brandeis welcomes new class of Stroum Family Scholars

Photo/Gaelen Morse

Stroum Scholars Aishwarya Ramesh, Sarah Lozano, and Neha Edison speak with Brandeis President Ron Liebowitz.

Brandeis leaders joined with Waltham city officials to celebrate the latest class of Stroum Family Waltham Scholars at a breakfast on campus on May 11.

The scholarship is named for Samuel N. Stroum, a Waltham High School graduate, businessman and philanthropist. He created the scholarship in 1996 with his wife, Althea, to provide tuition for the top Waltham High School seniors who are accepted to Brandeis. So far the scholarship has provided full tuition to Brandeis for more than 100 students from Waltham High School. This year’s winners were Neha Edison, Dulce Maria Gonzalez Barrera, Sarah Lozano, and Aishwarya Ramesh.

“Their many impressive achievements demonstrate just how much they will add to our campus over the next four years,” said President Ron Liebowitz. “We are delighted that they will be coming to Brandeis.”

After detailing some of the accomplishments each of the scholars achieved while in high school, Liebowitz introduced Sonya Alam ’23, a Stroum Scholar and double major in biology and psychology who plans to pursue a career in medicine. 

“I took classes that made me fall in love with the complexities of the human body and human behavior,” she said.

She recalled her excitement and nervousness when she attended the breakfast as a high school senior in the fall of 2019. The following spring, just as she felt she was settling in at Brandeis, her classes, extracurriculars and social life were upended by the onset of COVID-19.

While the switch to remote learning was difficult, Alam said she found her connections to friends, classmates, and professors deepened in spite of distance.

“Brandeis continued to uphold an extremely supportive environment, providing students with as much assistance as possible,” she recalled. “I felt like Brandeis had my back, and still believed in my success.”

“I want to remind you that you are not alone. Everyone is here on this journey with you,” Alam said. “Brandeis and this scholarship are the keys to your ever-flowing journey of growth and self-discovery.” 

The scholars also heard from Waltham Mayor Jeannette McCarthy. 

“You will never, ever regret the opportunity you are being provided,” McCarthy said. “This opportunity will open tremendous doors for you, not only in the city of Waltham, but in the entire world.”

Categories: Alumni, Student Life

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