The Lora Bryning Scholarship recognizes undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need who, regardless of their discipline, display excellence and talent in their ability to express themselves and their intellect in writing. Four students will be named Bryning Scholars for the 2015-16 academic year and each will receive a $9,000 scholarship.
Scholarship nomination procedures:
Only students nominated by the faculty are eligible. All faculty members are invited to nominate students who not only have exceptional academic records, but also meet the following criteria:
Nominees will be asked to submit a letter of introduction, essay, and writing sample to the Faculty Scholarship Committee. The committee will review the nomination letters, application materials, and academic transcripts of each nominee before selecting the final recipients.
The Lora Bryning Scholarship recipients are expected to be named no later than May 1.
The Lora Bryning Scholarship was established in memory of the late Lora Bryning Redford by her husband Ralph Redford. Lora Bryning was born in Olympia, Washington, and graduated first in her class summa cum laude from the College of Puget Sound in 1937 with a bachelor's degree in French. She pursued graduate studies in Spanish at Mills College in Oakland, California.
During World War II, she worked for the U.S. Railway Mission in Mexico (an agency created to insure the steady supply of precious ores for the American war effort.) In 1945, she began her diplomatic career in Mexico City as one of the very first women in the Foreign Service. For the next seven years, she served in Mexico, Belgium, Japan and lastly in Burma, where she was assistant cultural attaché. In 1952 her diplomatic career came to an end when she was forced to resign after marrying a fellow Foreign Service officer who had been assigned to the political section of the embassy in Rangoon. Although her career was on an upward trajectory, married women were not allowed to be diplomats.
For the next two decades, she accompanied her husband to postings in Indonesia, Taiwan, Nepal, Turkey and Cyprus. A good linguist and unfailingly curious, she threw herself into each new culture she encountered. She was especially interested in archaeology, and she drew upon her experience of the Himalayas and Tibet to write two books commissioned by the "Getting to Know" series. She served as program officer at the Council for the International Exchange of Scholars until 1990. She also set up a lectureship in archaeology at the University of Puget Sound. She died at the age of 88 in 2005.
Because of her natural gift for writing, Lora Bryning Redford’s devoted husband established this scholarship after her death to encourage and further the education of other young people with a similar talent. It is his hope that this award will encourage these writers and help them achieve their fullest potential. It is Mr. Redford's belief that well-educated, excellent writers are the best hope and catalyst for change in our society.