Western Washington University Alumni Association

Sierra Truesdale

Major - Psychology
Hometown - Friday Harbor, WA

“Because of this scholarship, I can worry and stress less about finances, have more time to study and less time to work, and I can move a couple steps closer toward graduating and hopefully attending Western’s graduate program for Master’s in School Counseling!”

What's my story? My story is a simple one. I’m a twenty year old Caucasian female living and feeling as though I'm the most abnormal, lonely minority alive; I’m very studious, and I try really hard to be perfect, at least on paper. I have a 3.93 GPA, I’m majoring in Psychology and minoring in English-Literature. I want to work in a school setting someday with kids and their families. I’ve been interning with the Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center for over six months working with co-facilitators and school counselors helping youth learn peaceful conflict resolution strategies. I was raised an only child but I have four much older half siblings, and I miss my mom every second of every day. What led to me receiving this scholarship? Dedication, determination, motivation, drive to make my mom proud, honesty, integrity, hard work and hope for the future.

How has this scholarship impacted my life? Well, without this scholarship and others, I simply could not be attending Western. I could not be broadening my knowledge and sharpening my wisdom and opening my mind each and every day. I am completely on my own financially (and sometimes emotionally) and I know loans and debt are common among most students, but I am not most college students, and I don’t have the luxury of receiving loans and knowing that I’ll be able to pay them off one day. My dream is to be the first in my family to go to college and earn a Bachelor’s degree, to attend a graduate program and earn my Master’s in school counseling, to have a real career and a stable bank account and less stressful life. Without this scholarship, none of these dreams could come true, and I could not be proving wrong the statistics that say students from low-income one-parent unstable households are unlikely to graduate high school let alone college.

The death of my mother and the separation of me from a lot of my family members have deeply impacted my life. Because I have lost my mother, I live every day knowing that human life is fragile and short and oh-so precious. I live not just to succeed and look good on paper, but to learn as much as I can and love as much as I can and meet as many people as I can and travel as much as I can and make my mom proud as much as I can.

When I'm not studying, which isn’t very often, I like to go for walks, bike some trails, go on scenic drives to nowhere, talk with friends and family, clean and organize my house, lay in the sun, cuddle my kitten (Winston), grab a coffee at Boulevard Park, devour some Pure Bliss desserts, cook and bake and write in my journal.


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Western Washington University
Alumni Association

516 High Street, MS 9199
Bellingham, WA 98225
360.650.3353 | alumni.wwu.edu
WWU is an equal opportunity institution.