Paving (and Painting) the Road to Success
What does the Barry Stamps Scholarship mean to its Barry University recipients?
For many, the impact of the Stamps Scholars Program is difficult to put into words. That’s why a group of Barry Stamps Scholars decided to paint it on a canvas. In a large-scale mural celebrating their Barry experience and, as Rebecca Rogers said, “symbolizing the pathway to success,” the Scholars worked together to showcase their appreciation for the myriad ways the Stamps Scholars Program has impacted their lives and their futures.
The vision for the mural began with a literal image—a paved road, a finish line marked with the word “Success.” But that simple backdrop was soon awash in splashes of color, splatter-painting, and, finally, bare footprints. “The footprints are in a weird kind of direction because it’s supposed to represent that the pathway to success isn’t always a straight pathway,” said Rebecca Rogers. “But you can still get there.”
For the Barry Stamps Scholars who teamed up to create the mural, the activity represented the personal growth they have achieved thanks to the program. Rebecca Rogers remarked that starting with a blank canvas was akin to beginning her own academic journey with help from the Barry Stamps Scholars Program. “It’s about starting with a blank slate, starting on an equal-opportunity basis, and creating beauty out of a situation where perhaps you’re unsure and might not be able to see all the answers right away.” For Samantha Britz and Rebecca Rogers, the splatter-painting effect represented the incredible diversity of the Barry community as well as the excitement, chaos, and even obstacles we each experience as we strive to meet our goals.
As they worked together to complete the mural, each student reflected on their gratitude for all that the Barry Stamps Scholars Program has enabled them to achieve. Several students agreed that it opened them up to a world of culture, diversity, and opportunity in ways that have been both life-changing and life-affirming. “Without the Stamps,” said Morgan Hawkins, “none of us would be here. None of us would even have the opportunity to achieve the success that we want to achieve.” For these Barry Stamps Scholars, the painting conveys exactly that.