Comments from a Past Peg Connolly Scholar

ATRA’s Student Development Committee wanted to highlight past Peg Connolly Scholars to gain some insight into their experience at as a scholar. Check out what this past scholar had to say!

“I first heard of the Peg Connolly Scholarship from my professor during class. I wasn’t 100% sure what it entailed but it sounded like an awesome way to jump in the therapeutic recreation world. To be honest, I didn’t think I was going to be chosen. When I found out I was going to Oklahoma City as a Peg Connolly Scholar I was beyond excited and slightly intimidated. I was about to meet the people who wrote my textbooks, ATRA board members and professionals who have been in the field for decades. And who was I? I had just graduated and was trying to figure out my next steps. Being at the conference and meeting hundreds of professionals was a great way to get my journey going. I had multiple job interview offers and gained insight on some of the controversial topics we are still trying to figure out in our profession. I met a great group of girls who were my fellow Peg Connolly Scholars and made countless memories. Even though we were together for only a few days, by the end we had shared our fears and our future goals creating a bond that was unique and unforgettable. I would have never had this experience if I wasn’t willing to be vulnerable and push myself to apply and take on the challenge of being a Peg Connolly Scholar. The confidence gained, friendships made, and professional connections were invaluable and a great way to start off my career as a CTRS.

Katelyn Winslow, CTRS

Peg Connolly Scholar 2014″

Have you submitted your application to be a Peg Connolly Scholar yet?

2 thoughts on “Comments from a Past Peg Connolly Scholar

  1. I highly recommend this scholarship to any student.
    I had applied for this scholarship twice as an undergraduate student at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia and didn’t win either time. Looking back, I should have enlisted my professors to help me with my application/ reviewing my essays.
    I applied a third time during my graduate school (Indianan University, Bloomington, Indiana) and had won it in 2004. I was shocked.
    My best advice is being resilient and be persistent for those who didn’t win the first time.
    However, a student’s odds increase 100% more compared to those students who don’t apply.
    I was asked to be part of the scholarship selection committee in 2009 and assisted with training students who had won it.
    About the scholarship: It is a working scholarship. Students monitor the sessions and mark sheets for attendees at end of session so they can earn credit for attending.
    The benefits:
    Based on my experiences:
    • Feeling of pride: it feels good to win.
    • Networking: meet a lot of people in the field
    • Career opportunities: you could meet the person who could give you a job.
    • Education: the training sessions are very interesting and beneficial
    • Insider knowledge: there are things going on in our profession that those outside of ATRA are simply not aware of. I mean ATRA can do the best they can to advocate. But really, it is those who show up and do are the ones who are on the leading edge.
    • Advocacy: you’ll get a chance to meet with the different ATRA teams, including the public policy team (my personal favorite) who will help you get involved in promoting our profession on a national level.

  2. Meeting Dr. Peg Connolly

    I had won the 2004 Peg Connolly Scholarship to the national ATRA conference, which was in Kansas City, Missouri that year.
    I regret to say that I had heard of Peg Connolly and knew she was the first president of ATRA. However, I didn’t know who she was.
    I had the opportunity to attend a conference in Greenville, SC prior to the national conference (not sure who hosted this conference now). I assume it was the Southeastern Therapeutic Recreation Symposium.
    Dr. Peg Connolly was to give an introduction/ key note speech at the start of this event.
    I was sitting beside an individual who didn’t have a handout. I thought I was being generous and told her: you might want to have one of these. Laugh aloud. Then, they called up Dr. Peg Connolly to speak and she got up. She was the individual sitting right beside me.
    In another note:
    I appreciate so much what the founding members of ATRA have done for our profession.

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