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The 411: Youth

Thomas Seabers receives Toyota STEM scholarship

Thomas Seabers receives Toyota STEM scholarship
East Central High School graduate Thomas Seabers is the recipient of a $25,000 Toyota Texas Teachers Scholarship.

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July 31, 2013
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SAN ANTONIO -- Thomas Seabers of East Central High School is the recipient of a special scholarship in support of the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). He was awarded the scholarship July 24 by Texas A&M-San Antonio and Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas Inc. on the San Antonio campus. Thomas is only the second student to ever receive a check for $25,000 from this program, based on his intentions to become a math teacher and his outstanding application.

He will enroll in Palo Alto College in the fall 2013 semester and commit to attending A&M-San Antonio to complete his teaching degree in a STEM area. The scholarship will pay for tuition, fees, and books for four years of college.

“We are excited about this education initiative and partnering with Palo Alto College and Texas A&M University-San Antonio. Placing more STEM teachers in our South Side school districts is critical to the continued growth and sustainment of the required workforce of tomorrow,” said Chris Nielsen, president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing. “We have great faith in Thomas and his commitment to making a difference for our community.”

Nielsen teamed up with Dr. Maria Hernandez Ferrier, president of Texas A&M University-San Antonio; Dr. Michael Flores, president of Palo Alto College; and Gary Patterson, superintendent of East Central ISD, for the scholarship presentation. Also present was the first-ever recipient of the scholarship, Katie Dryzmala, now in her second year at Palo Alto College.

“The model of partnership and collaboration that this scholarship represents demonstrates an understanding of the value of investing in our children and the study of STEM programs,” said Dr. Ferrier. “Toyota Texas, Palo Alto College, and Texas A&M-San Antonio are here to help Thomas, Katie, and the recipients of the future to make our world a better place for the South Side and all of San Antonio.”

The scholarship is an annual award open to students in the East Central, Harlandale, Somerset, Southside, Southwest, and South San Antonio school districts.

This scholarship offers a double benefit to several area school districts in that students who will attend Palo Alto and commit to obtain a teaching degree in a STEM field at Texas A&M-San Antonio will be eligible to apply, and students will also commit to applying to a teaching position in the school district that they graduated from, ideally returning to their former middle or high school.

Thomas, whose hobbies include puzzles and building models with Legos, says he plans to teach math and continue to study engineering.

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