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Foundation Stories > Five Collegiate Students Win $2,000 Scholarships Through Veterans United Foundation

Veterans United Home Loans is proud to announce five winners of the Veterans United Foundation's annual scholarship program.

Veterans United Foundation, formed and fully funded by Veterans United Home Loans and its employees, strives to enhance lives by recognizing the selfless contributions of service members and their families through support of such individuals in need.

Despite the aid of benefits like the GI Bill, the increasing expense of a post-secondary degree is one of the greatest challenges facing so many of our nation's finest. In an effort to address this need, Veterans United Foundation has established the Veterans United Scholarship Program.

The program's primary goal is to assist military service members and their families by awarding five bi-annual $2,000 scholarships.

The five scholarship winners are:

  • Jill Rich of New Orleans, La. Rich attends the University of Phoenix and is pursuing her Associate of Arts in Criminal Justice. She spent six years as a Machinist in the US Navy, and is the daughter of a Retired US Coast Guard Master Chief Aviation Electronics Technician. She plans to become a paralegal in criminal law or become a probation officer for juveniles.
  • Michelle Dyke of Walker, Mich. Dyke attends Grand Rapids Community College and is pursuing an associate degree in nursing. Her grandfather served in World War II, her father is a former Marine who served in the Vietnam War and her husband is in the US Navy Reserves. She plans to become a registered nurse.
  • Ryan Boyle of Santee, Calif. Boyle attends National University and is pursuing his Bachelor of Arts degree in History. He was in the US Navy for 4 years, from 2006 to 2010, and plans to earn his Masters in Education and become a school principal.
  • Shannon Welch of Santa Cruz, Calif. Welch attends the University of California Santa Cruz. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Physics. She is the daughter of a retired naval officer who served in the US Navy for 26 years. Her future plans include obtaining her PhD in Mechanical Engineering, Applied Engineering or Materials Engineering.
  • Travis Laster of Kure Beach, N.C. Laster attends Minnesota State University Mankato and is pursuing a Graduate Degree in Communication Studies. He was a US Marine for four years, is an Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran and plans to start his own non-profit to help at-risk youth.

Funded entirely by employee donations, the Military Education Scholarship Program has contributed more than $50,000 to students in need since 2007.

The Military Education Scholarship Program grew from a desire among Veterans United employees to find an avenue to support America's service men and women. Company employees continue to fund 100 percent of the program.

About Veterans United

Veterans United is the nation's largest dedicated VA lender. The Missouri-based company made available more than $1.6 billion in financing in 2011. More than 750,000 military families have come to Veterans United for help with their home loan benefits since the company's founding. In 2007, the company received an Inc. 500 award as one of the fastest-growing small businesses in America.


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Veterans United Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity and is brought to you by Veterans United Home Loans, 1400 Veterans United Dr, Columbia, MO 65203, a VA Approved Lender. Veterans United Foundation and Veterans United Home Loans are not associated with any government agencies, including the VA. NMLS# 1907 (
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