In the fall semester, 316 students were awarded the Brookshire Scholarship.
To honor those students and their donor, the annual Brookshire Scholarship banquet was held March 28 in the Cambre Atrium of Patrick F. Taylor Hall.
William Brookshire was accompanied by his daughter, Lori Garrison, and business colleague, Joseph Niles, who is also an LSU mechanical engineering alumnus.
Dean Judy Wornat opened the banquet with a brief overview of Brookshire’s life and accomplishments.
Brookshire is the co-founder and chair of the board of S&B Engineers and Constructors. He graduated from the University of Houston with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and also received his master’s and doctorate degrees in chemical engineering from LSU.
He worked as a process engineering supervisor for Exxon Corporation in Houston for six years. He and another business partner, James Slaughter, Sr. decided to start their own company, which now employs over 7,000 people globally.
The Brookshire scholarship is awarded to full-time undergraduate students who have a combined work and course load of 30 or more hours per week.
Wornat said the scholarship first started in 2012-13 and had 85 recipients. However, this spring semester, 332 students will be awarded, a record-breaking number for the College.
University President F. King Alexander said the scholarship has been awarded to over 750 students and received over $6 million in total awards to help working students get through school.
First-time scholarship recipient Chris Adams thanked Brookshire, Garrison and Niles for setting the standard in becoming a true tiger alumni and giving all they can to help others.
Adams said he is 1,200 miles from his home and came to LSU to chase his dream of becoming a petroleum engineer.
“In my personal case, this scholarship was able to help offset my out-of-state tuition and cost of living,” Adams said. “I am only one. If you look around this room, there are many with a story similar to mine.”
Leona Brown, an industrial engineering senior, has received the scholarship since last spring. Unfortunately, she lost her home to the 2016 Louisiana Flood.
“Before I received the scholarship for the fall semester, I was working three jobs just to buy back all my materials,” Brown said. “Once I received the scholarship that helped me not having to work as much and it also helped to support myself, in terms of being able to purchase things that I needed.”
Alexander also thanked Brookshire for donating money to the University to build a Military and Veterans Student Center.
Alexander said the University has over 570 veterans who have come back to their families and they are in need of a state-of-the-art veterans system, which is in the process of being built.
“Dr. Brookshire stepped up to the plate, not only to help individual students, but he is also helping our veterans get the services that they deserve,” Alexander said.
One veteran who is proud of this donation is Robert Young.
Young is a 26-year-old construction management senior from Tampa, Florida. He served four and a half years in the army.
“I want to thank him for the scholarship,” Young said. “But I also want to thank him for the donation to the veteran’s center. It is going to be a great addition to campus.”
The banquet concluded with Brookshire receiving gifts from the students. The alumnus had one piece of advice for students, to keep working.
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Raven Nichols, communications intern, LSU College of Engineering