Nine students selected as new Ingram Scholars

Five incoming first-year students and four rising sophomore students have been selected for the Ingram Scholars Program. They were chosen from among more than 1,000 students who applied for the prestigious merit scholarship, which is awarded each year to students who have demonstrated academic excellence and dedication to service. 

Members from the Class of 2027 are: 

  • Ron Asoulin-Handelman of Dallas, Texas 
  • Caden Cyr of The Woodlands, Texas 
  • Şefika Öztürk of Antalya, Turkey 
  • Naomi Porter of Rancho Palos Verdes, California 
  • Kevin Song of Clarksburg, Maryland 

New members from the Class of 2026 are: 

  • Sharmila Adapa of Fairfax, Virginia 
  • Brinda Ambal of Chesterfield, Missouri 
  • Aryan Garg of Cupertino, California 
  • Shree Kodavatiganti of Frisco, Texas 

The Ingram Scholars Program, which began in 1994 with a group of six scholars, has grown to include approximately 40 students annually and supports a robust network of nearly 300 alumni. 

“The Ingram Scholars Program is a cornerstone example of Vanderbilt’s commitment to supporting student growth through service and reflection,” said Tiffiny Tung, vice provost for undergraduate education. “We look forward to supporting the work of the newest Ingram Scholars as they seek to create positive change within communities across the globe.” 

The program was conceived in 1993 by E. Bronson Ingram, who was president of the Vanderbilt University Board of Trust from 1991 until his death in 1995, as a way to encourage students to combine a professional career with a commitment to community service and giving. Since Ingram’s passing, his wife, Martha Rivers Ingram, and two of their sons, John and Orrin, have been strongly involved in the program’s ongoing development. 

Ingram Scholars engage in a minimum of 16 hours of civic and community service each month, through which they address significant societal challenges in collaboration with well-established organizations in service to the Nashville community. During their sophomore year, each Ingram Scholar creates and proposes a sustainable and collaborative summer service project to be executed the following summer. Currently, 10 Ingram Scholars are implementing their summer service projects domestically and abroad, serving communities as distant as Cochabamba, Bolivia, and as close as Vanderbilt’s campus. 

Of the almost 450 projects funded throughout the tenure of the program, 221 scholars have served domestic communities, while 202 have implemented projects internationally. The program encourages the scholars to create durable service projects that become self-sustaining. Ingram Scholars are awarded a full tuition scholarship with housing benefits for four years and a stipend for their summer project. 

For more information, visit the Ingram Scholars Program website.