Legacy Fund Recipients
Meet Shannon Sweeney
Check back for updates on Shannon and information on future Legacy Fund recipients.
Inaugural Recipient of the Marymount Legacy Fund
When Shannon Sweeney learned during her sophomore year at Marymount in 2005 that the College would graduate its last class in May 2007, she was unsure of her next step. The one thing she did know was that she wanted to stay connected to the Marymount community as long as she could. So she applied to Fordham College at Lincoln Center last year, was accepted and transferred there this fall.
She also earned the first Marymount Legacy Fund scholarship, a $5,000 tuition award given to a female student atFordham who embodies the Marymount spirit throughlearning and leadership.
“I was touched to be the first recipient,” said Sweeney, an English literature major who expects to graduate in May. “Marymount was very important to me. This is a way for me to carry on that memory.”
Sweeney’s dedication to the school she loves and her ability to turn her disappointment at its closing into a positive experience influenced the fund committee’s decision to choose her as the premier recipient.
“Shannon represents a student who is able to cherish her Marymount roots and also embrace her future,” said Kristine Welker, ’88, chair of the Marymount Legacy Fund. “She symbolizes everything the Marymount Legacy Fund is designed to celebrate and promote among young women today and in the future.”
For Sweeney, she was just doing what came naturally.
“I’m flattered that people think I embody that,” she said. “Having so few people on campus has helped me realize how important each individual is to being a leader and creating the school we want for our last year there.”
The Marymount Legacy Fund committee will continue to search for deserving Fordham students like Sweeney who personify the spirit of Marymount. Welker said the committee plans to award at least one scholarship each year, but she hopes alumnae support for the fund will blossom and additional priorities will include providing “teaching grants for advanced women’s studies, [support for] research on women and leadership, [and] departmental chairs.”
Sweeney, who grew up in Kennebunkport, Maine, recently earned a certificate to teach English overseas and plans to move to South Korea after graduation to do so. This desire was born on the Marymount campus, where she shared a residence hall with students from the English First (EF) international school, which rents space there. She helped tutor EF students informally and discovered she enjoyed it.
“I always wanted to study abroad, but was never able to,” she said. “So I want to teach abroad.”
One of Sweeney’s former professors at Marymount, Patricia Silber, Ph.D., called her “a remarkable student, very much one of a kind,” and is convinced she’ll be successful overseas.
“Shannon is quiet,” she said, “not from shyness or lack of preparedness, but from self assurance,” qualities, Silber added, that her fellow students recognize and admire.
“I was touched to be the first recipient. Marymount was very important to me. This is a way for me to carry on that memory.”