Four MSU seniors receive national service-learning scholarships

Four MSU seniors receive national service-learning scholarships

Mississippi State seniors from Mississippi, Alabama and Texas are the university's first selections for national Dawn Brancheau Foundation Service-Learning Scholarships.

The Orlando, Florida-based organization recently presented $8,000 in scholarship funds for the 2014-15 school year to MSU's Center for the Advancement of Serving-Learning Excellence.

A world-class animal trainer, Brancheau was regarded as the "face" of SeaWorld Orlando, where she had worked since 1994.

In 2010, she died after being involved in a tragic on-site accident with the orca "Tilikum." That same year, her family created the foundation to serve as a living memorial. For more, see

In addition to $750 academic stipend in the fall and spring semesters, each student will receive $500 to create and complete a service-learning project honoring one of Indiana-native Brancheau's four loves--animals, the environment, children, and handmade greeting cards.

MSU's inaugural Brancheau Foundation Scholars--and their respective focus areas--include (by hometown):

GULF SHORES, Alabama--(see MADISON, Mississippi);

HIGHLAND VILLAGE, Texas--Alexis R. Tentler, animal and dairy science major and the daughter of James and Cynthia Tentler; love of animals

MADISON--Travis R. Crabtree, landscape architecture major and the son of Kenneth Crabtree of Gulf Shores, Alabama, and Shannon Arrowsmith of Madison; love of the environment

MOBILE, Alabama--Rebekah L. Herald, special education major and the daughter of Gregory and Nancy Herald; love of children; and

TYLER, Texas--Mickenzie Robbins, art major and the daughter of Mark and Leslie Robbins; love of cards through art and graphic design.

Dated: 5/14/2014