Record $667,750 in scholarships awarded for 2023-24

Najia Choudhury Speaking at 2023 Scholarship Breakfast

Early in the morning on August 24, 2023, Mike Ilitch School of Business students who received a scholarship gathered with their families in the Ilitch School atrium for breakfast before moving to the Lear Auditorium for a formal presentation of awards.  

A total of $667,750 in scholarships were awarded to 197 students, the largest amount of scholarship dollars ever awarded in the school’s 77-year history.  

Dean Virginia Kleist commented on this moment in the university’s history in her remarks during the ceremony. 

“We are at a tremendous time in the 155-year, history of Wayne State University, with the first woman President, President Kimberly Espy, sworn in just yesterday. We have a very strong Board of Governors, excellence in our leadership, and it is my firm belief that this University is sitting at an inflection point. 

“We are about to begin an upward trajectory to be recognized as one of the nation’s most contributory and successful universities, with excellence in research, with excellence in helping to uplift our community via economic prosperity and social benefit, with excellence in education for all, with access and opportunity for all, and with a mission that is inspiring and heartwarming.” 

In addition to remarks from dean Virginia Kleist and assistant dean Linda Zaddack, accomplished Ilitch School student and recipient of the Rebecca Joy Butler Study Abroad Endowed Scholarship Najia Choudhury spoke about how this scholarship made studying abroad possible for her. 

“Standing here, I feel incredibly proud to be a Warrior. First, I want to offer a heartfelt thank you to Tim and Beverly Butler who graciously help Wayne State students like me study abroad, turning students’ wishful hopes into reality,” said Choudhury. “Traveling abroad can be daunting and include financial struggles for most students. Thanks to the Butler’s, students like myself are able to have incredible study abroad experiences, from basking in the local culture to learning from a global experience standpoint.” 

Ilitch School alum Steve Janicak gave the keynote address before the scholarship recipients were presented with their awards. He touched on his long career at numerous healthcare companies, and urged students to push through setbacks, build their network, and build their communication skills. He also noted that after graduating from Wayne State, he realized how rarified the skill sets Ilitch School students possess when they go out into the business world.  

These scholarships provide vital funds to students to help them pursue a lifechanging education at the Mike Ilitch School of Business. 

View the Scholarship Awards Flickr album.

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