Story posted April 26, 2011
Sean McElroy '12 has been awarded a Beinecke Scholarship worth $34,000 in support of his graduate education. The Beinecke Scholarship Program seeks to encourage and enable highly motivated students to pursue opportunities available to them and "to be courageous in the selection of a graduated course of study."
McElroy, of Capistrano Beach, Calif., is double-majoring in history and philosophy, and plans to pursue a Ph.D. in history.
"I have found my passion in social and intellectual history — and I have found that these two topics overlap and interact nicely in the young field of the history of science," wrote McElroy in his application essay. "Science, and its relationship to society, presents vital questions for the scholar of 20th-century history."
McElroy says in the next year he plans to complete an honors project in the Department of History studying the interaction between early American manned spaceflight and religion.
"I am very excited by the opportunity to pursue graduate work provided by the Beinecke, and I am thankful for the financial assistance which the scholarship will provide in the years to come," says McElroy. "Of course, I am very grateful to my professors, David Hecht, Patrick Rael and Scott Sehon. Also, thank you to Director of Student Fellowships and Research Cindy Stocks for her help in applying for this scholarship."
Since 1975 the program has selected more than 470 college juniors from 100 schools for support during graduate study in the arts, humanities and social sciences at any accredited university.
William Sperry Beinecke served The Sperry and Hutchinson Company from 1952 as general counsel, vice-president, president and, from 1966 until his retirement in 1980, as chairman and chief executive officer. Early in his term as president, he guided the creation of the foundation that is now The Sperry Fund. During his years with the company, he was an ardent advocate for business support of charitable and educational institutions. Responding to his initiative in 1971, the Sperry and Hutchinson board established the scholarship program in memory of his father and two uncles who had led the company before him.