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Ogden Foundation Scholar using music to help people

Sarah Fox receives top graduation honor; 42 other students recognized

Sarah Fox came to WKU to take advantage of the opportunity for international reach.

In the past four years, she has been to England, Cuba and Austria. Next week, she will accompany the WKU Chorale on a trip to Spain. This fall, she will begin a yearlong master’s program at the University of Birmingham in England on the next step toward a goal of using music to help impoverished communities.

Sarah Fox was recognized as the 2015 Ogden Foundation Scholar Award recipient. (WKU photo by Clinton Lewis)

Sarah Fox was recognized as the 2015 Ogden Foundation Scholar Award recipient. (WKU photo by Clinton Lewis)

“It’s just been an amazing journey,” said Fox, who was recognized Saturday as the Ogden Foundation Scholar, WKU’s top graduation award. “So many people have helped me along the way. I really can’t say enough for my professors and how they have prepared me. Now I get to go to England and do what I love.”

What she loves is music and helping others.

Fox, the daughter of Susan Fox and Brian Fox, has played organ at Trinity Episcopal Church in Russellville since seventh grade. She came to WKU as a piano major.

However, that changed after first trip abroad in 2012 to Newcastle University as the recipient of a US-UK Undergraduate Fulbright Award. While she was in England she attended an organ concert and decided “the organ was my instrument.”

On her next trip abroad to Cuba in 2013, she saw how music could bring people together and could be used to help those who are less fortunate. “It was a watershed for me that all these different facets of my life, the ideas started coming together,” Fox said. “It was in Cuba that I realized these two parts of my life don’t have to be separate. That I can bring the music and help bring people together as one thing.”

When she got back to Bowling Green, she received a grant from the WKU Sisterhood to launch an after-school choir program at T.C. Cherry Elementary School that would provide music opportunities to low-income students. “The students seemed to enjoy that time to just relax into the music,” she said.

Fox saw that music provided hope, had an impact on learning and provided a gift to students. “I want to continue that throughout my life,” she said.

She’s also helped younger students through The Center for Gifted Studies’ Super Saturdays program. She worked with Dr. Julia Roberts and Dr. Tracy Inman to develop a leadership course that encouraged students to pursue leadership skills and make a difference in their communities and around the world.

“It is at WKU that I have discovered my capacity to help others because others have helped me,” Fox said in her application for the Ogden award. “My professors and teachers have invested in me and I want to return that investment in the students I teach around the world. Most importantly, I will strive to continue the cycle of serving I learned through experience at WKU.”

Fox has received a scholarship from the U.S. Fulbright Student Program and will begin her master’s degree in music, choral conducting pathway, this fall at the University of Birmingham in England. She also will serve an intensive internship with Dr. Simon Halsey, director of the London Symphony Chorus and Berlin Radio Choir. Dr. Halsey will help her launch a music program for low-income students.

“I think I will change a lot and learn a lot in the next year,” she said. “I want to go where I’m continually learning and continually helping people.”

Fox, a graduate of the Honors College at WKU, also was recognized as a Scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.

WKU recognized 42 other Scholars of the College, who had the highest GPAs in their colleges while completing at least 60 credit hours at WKU.

Gordon Ford College of Business

  • Elizabeth Paige Higgs of Henderson, a Management major and daughter of Wayne and Sherry Higgs.
  • Jenna Lehkamp of Taylor Mill, an Accounting major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Todd and Nancy Lehkamp.
  • Patrick Portman of Coxs Creek, a Finance major and son of Joe and Nancy Portman.
  • Hunter Willis of Alvaton, a Finance major, Honors College graduate and son of Tony and Angela Willis.

College of Health and Human Services

  • Sarah Bright of Bowling Green, a Communication Disorders major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Jeff and Cindy Bright.
  • Natalie Buller of Fort Thomas, a Communication Disorders major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Jim and Ann Buller. She received concurrent degrees and is a Spanish major and a scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.
  • Erin Burris of Greensburg, a Communication Disorders major and daughter of Justin and Pam Burris.
  • Ericka Hardin of Crestwood, is a Hospitality Management and Dietetics major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Rick and Marian Hardin. She received concurrent degrees and is a Spanish major and a scholar of the and Potter College of Arts and Letters.
  • Christie Jewell of Hardyville, a Communication Disorders major and is daughter of Gregg Jewell and Donna Farlee.
  • Inge Patton of Alvaton, a Hospitality Management and Dietetics major and spouse of Dr. Harvey Wallmann and daughter of Rudolf and Gertrud Baer.
  • Katelyn Pendley of Belton, a Communication Disorders major and daughter of Dennis and Teresa Pendley.
  • Jeanna Smith of Cave City, a Communication Disorders major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Roger and Louise Smith.
  • Kayla Steele of Nicholasville, a Nursing major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Calvin and Angela Steele.
  • Krystal Steele of Cincinnati, Ohio, a Design, Merchandising and Textiles major and daughter of Kim Flake.
  • Jeffrey Walker of Wilmore, a Hospitality Management and Dietetics major, Honors College graduate and son of Patricia and Ellis Walker. He received concurrent degrees and is an International Affairs major and a scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.

Ogden College of Science and Engineering

  • Shelby Adams of Kuttawa, a Psychological Sciences major and daughter of Ronny Adams and Lori Jones. She also is a Criminology major and a scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.
  • April Butler of Paducah, a Biology major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Tom and Julie Brazell.
  • Haley Freeman of Versailles, a Biology major and daughter of Keith and Lisa Freeman.
  • Dylan Jones of Berea, a Civil Engineering major and son of Steve and Lisa Jones.
  • Autumn Smith of Glasgow, a Biology and Chemistry double major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Chris and Donna Smith.
  • Kaitlyn Snyder of Bowling Green, a Psychological Sciences major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Larry and Tamara Snyder.
  • Nicki Taylor of Crofton, an Agriculture major, Honors College graduate and spouse of Travis Taylor and daughter of Dale and Denise Seay. She also is a Mass Communication major and a scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.
  • Samuel White of Scottsville, a Chemistry and Physics major, Honors College graduate and son of Todd and Robin White. He received concurrent degrees.

College of Education and Behavioral Sciences

  • Shayla Carter of Louisville, an Exceptional Education-LBD and MSD major and daughter of Randy and Pam Carter.
  • Kelly Kean of Elizabethtown, an Elementary Education major and daughter of Michael and Nancy Kean.
  • Nathan O’Bryan of Tavares, Florida, a Psychology major and son of Howell O’Bryan and Jacqueline Russell. He also is a Sociology major and a scholar of the Potter College of Arts & Letters.
  • Terri Robertson of Magnolia, an Elementary Education major and daughter of Jeff and Michelle Emmerling and Ray and Isa Robertson.
  • Noelle Trebendis of Franklin, Tennessee, an Elementary Education major and daughter of Frank and Christine Trebendis.

University College

  • Trevor Merideth of Edmonton, an Interdisciplinary Studies major and son of Billy and Jo Merideth.

Potter College of Arts & Letters

  • Joshua Beal of Louisville, a News/Editorial Journalism major, Honors College graduate and son of Scott and Joan Beal.
  • Sidney Blanford of Bowling Green, an Anthropology major and daughter of Cassy Luckett and Sean Blanford.
  • Kelsey Byrd of Horse Cave, a Sociology major and spouse of Jordan Byrd and daughter of Steven and Kathleen Gregg.
  • Lindsey Byrd of Dawson Springs, a Music major and daughter of Bart and Holly Peters.
  • John Corum of Auburn, an English and Religious Studies double major, Honors College graduate and son of Allen and Tammy Corum.
  • Sarah Fox of Russellville, a Music and History double major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Brian and Susan Fox.
  • David Gifford of Bowling Green, an English major and son of Jerry and Tammie Gifford.
  • Sarah Haywood of Baxter, an English and History double major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Allen and Peggy Haywood.
  • Matthew Lawson of LaGrange, an International Affairs and Spanish double major, Honors College graduate and son of Robin and Linda Lawson.
  • Brittany Moster of Louisville, an English major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Bob and Linda Moster.
  • Phillip Pearson of Belleville, Illinois, a History major, Honors College graduate son of William Pearson and Maggie Coats.
  • Blake Soper of Mount Sterling, a Public Relations and Sociology major, Honors College graduate and son of Shelley Soper-Collins. He received concurrent degrees.
  • Joseph Starks of Lexington, a Political Science major, Honors College graduate and son of Jeff and Bev Starks. He also is an Economics major and a scholar of the Gordon Ford College of Business.
  • Allison Teta of Louisville, an English for Secondary Teachers major, Honors College graduate and daughter of Bob and Ellen Teta.

Contact: Registrar’s Office, (270) 745-3351

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