Six Students Are Named Inaugural Stamps Scholars

Through a partnership with the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation—the first such partnership for an Ivy League school—Dartmouth’s most promising undergraduates have a new opportunity to pursue action-based learning during their junior and senior years.

The Penelope W. and E. Roe Stamps IV Leadership Scholar Awards will give up to 20 exceptional students at a time access to funds to pursue self-designed experiential learning projects. The Stamps Scholars will each have access to up to $10,000 a year over the course of their final two years at Dartmouth. Half the funds will be provided by Dartmouth and the other half will come from the Stamps Foundation.

The six inaugural Stamps Scholars are, top row, from left, Katherine Crane ’16, Rachel Margolese ’16, and Andrés Mejía-Ramón ’16. In the second row, from left, are Thomas Wang ’16, Lucia Pohlman ’15, and Leehi Yona ’16.

“Opportunities for students to learn by doing—to test ideas in the world, maybe fail, and to bring those experiences back to the drawing board to try again—are increasingly critical to the value of higher education,” says Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon ’77. “That’s why creating opportunities like the Stamps Leadership Scholar Awards is one of my highest priorities. Dartmouth is proud to collaborate with the Stamps Foundation to establish this remarkable program.”

“We believe that giving the most talented, hard-working students the seeds to follow their own aspirations can have a tremendous impact on the world—and we look forward to seeing what the Dartmouth Stamps Scholars will accomplish,” says E. Roe Stamps IV, who with his wife, Penny, created the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation in 1986.

“Dartmouth’s commitment to providing extraordinary learning experiences in and out of the classroom makes it a perfect partner for us,” he says.

The Stamps Awards are intended to give students maximum flexibility to design their own learning experiences through global and community service learning projects, internships, research, performance, entrepreneurship, and other activities that complement what they are learning in the classroom. Each Stamps Scholar will work with a faculty mentor to develop their individual program. The open-endedness of the funds is intended to allow scholars, if they wish, to design multiple experiences that build on one another.

Dartmouth already embraces experiential learning in many forms, including internships, service learning opportunities, and a variety of academic offerings, ranging from “Engines 21” at Thayer School of Engineering to the Policy Research Shop of the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences. Additionally, 16 percent of the Dartmouth students who graduated in 2014 published independent research.

With the Stamps Scholars program, Dartmouth students will have an opportunity to further their experiential learning with the possibility of creating a two-year plan that builds from one term to the next.

Roe Stamps is a co-founder of the Boston-based private investment company Summit Partners. A former U.S. Navy Reserve lieutenant, he graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in industrial engineering and earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. Stamps is a trustee emeritus of the Georgia Tech Foundation, and a trustee of the University of Miami, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, among others. He has received Georgia Tech's Distinguished Alumnus Award from the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering and the Joseph Mayo Pettit Alumni Distinguished Service Award, the highest award conferred by the Georgia Tech Alumni Association. He was inducted into Georgia Tech’s Engineering Hall of Fame in 2001. In 2010, Stamps was recognized as Humanitarian of the Year by the American Red Cross South Florida Region. In 2012, he received the Alumni Achievement Award from Harvard Business School.

Penny Stamps, a Chicago native, attend the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she earned a BA in design from the School of Art and a teaching certificate in elementary education. She had a career as an interior designer. Her philanthropic interests include animals, the arts, and education. She established a lecture series at Michigan featuring leaders in disciplines as diverse as architecture, engineering, music, fashion design, and environmentalism. The University of Michigan recently named the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design in her honor.

The Stamps Family Charitable Foundation partners with more than 40 colleges and universities to award multi-year scholarships that enable extraordinary educational experiences—part of the foundation’s vision to build a nationally prestigious, merit-based scholarship program that supports exceptional students as they become leaders throughout society.

This year, almost 600,000 high school seniors across the country are competing for nearly 200 Stamps Scholarships. The program's 164 alumni include three Rhodes Scholars, including two in the past two years. This coming April, nearly 600 current and past Stamps Scholars from around the country, including the new Dartmouth Stamps Scholars, will gather for a biennial national convention in Atlanta, hosted by the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Six inaugural Stamps Scholars have been chosen for the 2014–2015 academic year. They are:

Katherine Crane ’16

Major: Environmental Studies; Minor: Human Centered Design

Hometown: Dalton, Mass.

ArtxChange Marketplace Social Enterprise

Crane has completed the first phase of design and development of an innovative social enterprise, which is an online platform that helps artists and nonprofit organizations support each other. Her Stamps Leadership Scholarship will allow her to do user research and develop marketing strategies.

Rachel Margolese ’16

Major: Engineering Sciences

Hometown: Andover, Mass.

Life Cycle Analysis of Energy Use at Dartmouth College

An engineering sciences major with an interest in sustainability and the environment, Margolese intends to use her Stamps Leadership Scholarship to apply her skills in life cycle analysis and systems planning to Dartmouth’s own energy use.

Andrés Mejía-Ramón ’16

Major: Anthropology and Physics

Hometown: Naucalpan de Juarez, Mexico, and East Longmeadow, Mass.

Local Hydrology in Teotihuacan: A Study of Ancient Canals and Water Basins

Mejía-Ramón plans to use the Stamps Leadership Scholarship Award to discover pre-Hispanic irrigation systems in his native Mexico—research that will pave the way for his senior thesis.

Lucia Pohlman ’15

Major: Environmental Studies

Hometown: Mill Valley, Calif.

Finding Leverage Points for More Local Healthy Food in the Dartmouth Food System

Pohlman will use her Stamps Leadership Scholarship to collect data from local farmers, food suppliers, and Dartmouth Dining Services that will inform her senior thesis in environmental studies and allow her to act on her findings to create real change.

Thomas Wang ’16

Major: Economics; Minor: Health Policy

Hometown: Allen, Texas

Millennial Action Coalition

Wang plans to use his Stamps Leadership Scholarship to develop his grassroots health advocacy group, which mobilizes millennials around an actionable agenda for healthcare reform and innovation.

Leehi Yona ’16

Major: Biology and Environmental Sciences; Minor: Public Policy

Hometown: Montreal, Canada

Arctic Issues

The Stamps Leadership Scholarship will help Yona continue her work and develop leadership on Arctic issues, allowing her to participate in conferences on international Arctic policy, scientific research, and civic advocacy.