My name is Meaghan Dowdell and I am about to enter my junior year at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania. I am majoring in Exercise Science with hopes of furthering my education in a doctorate program for Physical Therapy. I also am a member of the University’s Division III softball team and enjoy partaking in extracurricular activities related to my major.
On August 27th, 2018, my Dad was involved in a tragic accident while at work. He was struck in the head by a fallen tree trunk and suffered a traumatic brain injury and multiple fractured bones in his face, leaving my mother, brother, and I in complete shock and devastation. For four months my Dad fought for his life, from surviving several surgeries and going in and out of consciousness, to opening his eyes and breathing on his own, he showed tremendous strength and gave my family hope that he would make a recovery from this horrific accident. However, unfortunately two days before Christmas, my Dad passed away from a brainstem hemorrhage, ultimately caused by the initial trauma of his injury.
My father was the hardest working person I know, and he sacrificed everything to support our family in every way. He was the definition of a great father and mentor. Because of him, I was always encouraged to do well in school and never had to worry about how to afford it. Financially, he covered a huge majority of our living with his income, but since his death this has changed. My family is now faced with countless bills and less than half of the income to pay them, causing immeasurable stress all while grieving this recent loss.
Since his death, I have been forced to accept this harsh reality, while figuring out ways to afford my education. However, despite this, I am even more determined to continue to excel at school and to complete my doctorate in Physical Therapy. I strive to make him proud and to honor all of his hard work that has gotten me to where I am today.I would sincerely like to thank the Kanwisher/ Burton Agency & KCNJ for their generosity in helping me continue my education this upcoming school year, allowing me to get closer to achieving my life goal of being a physical therapist. Being able to complete school is the first step in being able to honor my Dad’s life and to someday support my family the way that he has supported us. This scholarship will make a huge difference and I am eternally grateful for the opportunity I have been give