NRF, University of Phoenix named the 20 Dream BIG Scholarship recipients for 2015

WASHINGTON, 2015-9-11 — /EPR Retail News/ — The National Retail Federation and University of Phoenix have named the 20 Dream BIG Scholarship recipients for 2015 whose dreams to further their education will now become a reality. The recipients – all current retail employees – were selected out of hundreds of applicants from more than 75 retailers across the country. The deserving retail employees will soon be able to pursue a master’s or undergraduate degree at University of Phoenix thanks to the University’s collaboration with NRF to provide each recipient with a full-tuition scholarship.

“These recipients weren’t chosen by mistake; each of them has proven that they believe in their dreams and that anything is possible in this industry,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Through hard work and determination anyone can succeed in retail, and these 20 individuals are already well on their way to the top. Year after year we recognize similar qualities within our Dream BIG ‘class’; these employees make their workplaces, their communities and our industry better through passion, ambition and determination.”

“Opportunities in retail continue to grow as technology and consumer demands drive change within the industry,” said Ruth Veloria, executive dean for University of Phoenix School of Business. “Education is critical to career advancement and leadership in this field filled with diverse career paths. University of Phoenix is proud to team up with the National Retail Federation to develop the next generation of leaders in retail by providing an industry-aligned education designed to help them succeed.”

The recipients of the 2015 Dream BIG Scholarship are: 

Julie Brandenburg-Horn
The Kroger Co.
Loss Prevention POS Analyst
Bachelor’s

Tim Hall
7-Eleven
Zone Asset Protection Manager
Bachelor’s

Kasey Harris
JCPenney
Store Operations Manager
Bachelor’s

Victoria Hersey
Walgreens
Store Manager
Bachelor’s

Heather Jacobsen
Stein Mart
Assistant Store Manager
Bachelor’s

Delia Kurland
Crate and Barrel
East Coast Regional Operations Manager
Master’s

Derek LaHair
Mattress Firm
Interim Community Relations Manager
Master’s

Amie Lane
The Container Store
Training Manager
Bachelor’s

Cara Leone
L.L.Bean Outlet Store
Assistant Manager
Bachelor’s

Victor Letky
Goodwill of Southern Nevada
Training and Development Partner
Master’s

Timberey Meeks
The Container Store
Operations Analyst
Bachelor’s

Stephanie Mekhjian
David’s Bridal
Store Manager
Bachelor’s

Sally Moore
At Home
Store Director
Bachelor’s

Tammy Nguyen
Buckle
Social Media and Video Project Manager
Master’s

James Ostag
Macy’s Inc.
Supply Chain Asset Protection Manager
Master’s

Chrissy Raymond
Boscov’s Department Store
Vendor Services Assistant
Bachelor’s

Mark Robinson
Saks Fifth Ave OFF 5TH
Store Director
Bachelor’s

Carol Rosenauer
Bealls Inc.
Director of Supply Services
Bachelor’s

Andrew Schreiber
Mattress Firm
Area Manager
Master’s

Joel Smith
Gap Inc.
Transportation Manager
Bachelor’s

NRF and University of Phoenix surprised 10 of the Dream BIG scholarship recipients while they were at work to give them the big news. Watch the video of each surprise.

Retail executives from some of the industry’s most well-known companies such as HSNi, West Elm and Alex and Ani served as members of the executive judging committee that chose the recipients.

The Dream BIG Scholarship program is made possible through a collaboration between NRF’s nonprofit arm, the NRF Foundation, and University of Phoenix. This is the third year the NRF Foundation and University of Phoenix have offered the Dream BIG Scholarship for current retail employees. The scholarship will be offered for a fourth year in 2016, with applications expected to open in January 2016. View profiles of the 2015 recipients and learn moreabout the Dream BIG Scholarship.

About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix is constantly innovating to help working adults move efficiently from education to careers in a rapidly changing world. Flexible schedules, relevant and engaging courses, and interactive learning can help students more effectively pursue career and personal aspirations while balancing their busy lives. As a subsidiary of Apollo Education Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: APOL), University of Phoenix serves a diverse student population, offering associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs from campuses and learning centers across the U.S. as well as online throughout the world. For more information, visit www.phoenix.edu.

About the National Retail Federation
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. nrf.com.

Treacy Reynolds
Kathy Grannis Allen
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

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NRF, University of Phoenix named the 20 Dream BIG Scholarship recipients for 2015

NRF, University of Phoenix named the 20 Dream BIG Scholarship recipients for 2015