Donors making a difference

A Student Story: Zachary Perry

Chris Sifford Memorial Foundation member Paul Pothoff, Zachary Perry, and Provost Frank Einhellig pictured here at the Endowed Scholarship Dinner.

Chris Sifford Memorial Foundation member Paul Pothoff, Zachary Perry, and Provost Frank Einhellig pictured here at the Endowed Scholarship Dinner.

From attending Parkview High School and Missouri State University in Springfield to soon traveling abroad to Oxford, England; Zachary Perry’s list of accomplishments would make any alumni proud to be a Bear.

Zach is a senior public relations major minoring in mass media. He stretches his time between school and two jobs, one at a local news station and the other at Parkview High School as the assistant speech and debate coach.

He successfully landed his job at southwest Missouri’s number one news station, KY3, at age 20.  Zach started as one of the studio operators.  Later he helped establish the KY3 Ozarks Sports Zone and landed an on-air spot during its kickoff show.  Zach has made history twice by becoming the youngest person hired and the youngest on-air personality in the station’s 60 year existence.

Zach also finds time to work at his high school alma mater, Parkview.  He coaches and critiques debaters’ performances on public speaking at national tournaments.

Zach works close to 65 hours a week while remaining a successful full-time student.  Despite his impressive list of accomplishments, Zach still has to supplement his job and scholarships with student loans.

“I still cannot pay for school on my own.  I have understood from the beginning that taking out student loan debt for a college education is an investment in my future,” said Zach.  “I am thankful every day that donors have made that same investment in me.”

Once it was official that he would be traveling abroad to Oxford, Zach knew he would not let anything stop him from pursuing his dream.

“My father taught me to always strive to be the best at everything I do…my mother, a Missouri State alumna, inspired me to get a college education. I knew immediately I would give up anything I was doing in the United States to pursue my lifelong dream of adventuring into the unknown and learning about the culture that is called the city of dreaming spires,” Zach said.

Zach was awarded the Chris Sifford Memorial Scholarship to continue his studies.  Scholarships and donations are what help make these dreams a reality for Zach.  His impressive story is just one of many.  Students all across campus are able to follow their passion and find their place because of generous Bears and their scholarships.

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