The Alicia Rae Bessey Memorial Scholarship Fund was established at the University of Maine at Augusta in 2021 with an original gift from family and friends.
This scholarship fund honors the memory of Alicia Rae Bessey and her substantial contributions to the UMA Bangor campus. In general, Alicia was a force for good in everything she did. While she faced mental health struggles throughout her education, she persevered and took life one day at a time, acting as a resource and model for students struggling with similar challenges.
Alicia provided leadership, comradery, and support in a variety of roles including in her work with the UMA Bangor Garden Club, the Student Government Association, TRIO, the People for Positive Action club, and in her general community and campus organizing. Alicia co-founded the inaugural “Rainbows for UMA Bangor” LGBTQIA+ student club and helped evolve this club into a group for students, staff, and faculty as “Rainbows Across UMA.” She was an interdisciplinary major who created her own major in LGBTQ and Sexual Education Advocacy bringing together sociology, psychology, and women’s and gender studies.
Alicia loved animals, gardening, spending time with friends and family at their camp, reading (especially science fiction and fantasy), and playing Pathfinder and Magic the Gathering with her friends in the Table-Top Gaming club. During her time at UMA Bangor, Alicia was awarded the WICCD Student of the Year and twice she was awarded the Bangor Campus Garden Student of the Year. She was also awarded the Liberal Studies A.A. Student of the Year and the Bangor Campus Student of the Year award. Alicia’s memorial contribution lives on at UMA Bangor, in the hearts and minds of her friends and family, and in this scholarship, which we hope will help students like Alicia pursue their passion for social justice through education.
Awarded to any UMA Bangor student with a 2.0 minimum GPA who embodies the spirit of Alicia’s perseverance and her commitment to making UMA-Bangor, and the world, a better place.
Applicants are asked to submit a 1 to 2 page, double-spaced essay that speaks to Alicia’s spirit, addressing the following questions: What brought you to UMA-Bangor? What challenges have you faced in your life and education? What are your passions and hobbies? What are your short or long-term goals and how will this scholarship help you to achieve them?
Please submit essays to Sarah Hentges, chair of the Alicia Rae Bessey Memorial Scholarship Committee by March 31st, 2023 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Be sure that your essay includes your name and student ID#. Scholarships will be announced and awarded at the UMA-Bangor Awards Ceremony in April.