Pearson Foundation Awards Scholarships to Arkansan Philosophy, Journalism and Law Students

Pearson Foundation Awards Scholarships to Arkansan Philosophy, Journalism and Law Students
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Nine U of A students — all of whom are native Arkansans — were recently awarded scholarships thanks to the generosity of the Charles Thomas and Mary Alice Pearson Educational Foundation.

The organization, founded by local attorney and businessman Thomas Pearson and his wife, Mary Alice, annually supports students in the School of Journalism and Strategic Media and the School of Law. In 2022, their support also expanded to the Department of Philosophy.

"I want to congratulate the recipients of these scholarships for their academic excellence and drive for success," said Kathryn Sloan, interim dean of the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. "These students are leaders on our campus, and we're incredibly proud of their accomplishments. Thanks to the generosity of supporters like the Pearson Foundation, we can continue to financially reward outstanding student success in our college and make a high-quality public education a reality for all in our state."

All awardees represent the academic top 20% of their respective programs.

Caroline Chumley, a Master of Arts in journalism student from Rogers, received the $15,000 Pearson Educational Scholarship for the School of Journalism and Strategic Media, given to a rising junior or senior student in the school's five-year master's program. Alexzandra O'Neal, a junior journalism major from Rogers, also received a $2,500 scholarship from the foundation.

The Pearson Foundation also awarded four $2,500 scholarships to undergraduate students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy, including to Benton Anderson, a senior from Fort Smith; Paavan Atluri, a junior from Little Rock; Jared Georgianna, a junior from Farmington; and Raine Mosher, a senior from Bella Vista.

Additionally, three J.D. students in the School of Law were named to the latest class of Pearson Fellows, earning awards of $8,000 each for the academic year. These students join an esteemed group of 111 law students awarded since the fellowship's start in 1996.

The 2023-24 Pearson Fellows include Mills Bryant, a third-year law student from Searcy; Brett Callaway, a third-year law student from Conway; and Helen Hope, a second-year law student from Little Rock — all of whom are among the highest academic performers in their respective classes.

"We are immensely grateful for the tremendous, long-standing scholarship support of the Charles Thomas and Mary Alice Pearson Educational Foundation," said Cynthia Nance, dean of the School of Law.

"This transformative philanthropy reflects a commitment to education and opportunity," Nance added. "The foundation's incredibly generous support makes a legal education accessible to talented students, regardless of their financial circumstances."

Throughout their history of generous support, the Charles Thomas and Mary Alice Pearson Educational Foundation has gifted more than $245,000 to Fulbright College students and more than $1.5 million to the School of Law. Learn more about academic scholarships at the U of A or giving to student scholarships in Fulbright College or the School of Law.

This story also appeared in the Fulbright REVIEW publication.


Kaleb Turner, associate director of communications
Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences

Andra Parrish Liwag, senior director of communications
Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences


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