The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo was honored as a featured donor to the Bush School at the inaugural Donor and Scholar Celebration in April. The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has generously supported the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University through gifts of $125,000 per year for the past two years. The gifts will continue into the next academic school year for a total donation of $375,000. These annual gifts have allowed the School to offer scholarships to multiple students, significantly lessening the financial burden many students face upon graduation. By the fall of 2016, approximately twenty students will have received scholarships offered through the generosity of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, allowing the Bush School to attract some of the best students from around the country.
Bush School Dean Ryan Crocker said the generosity of donors like the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is vital to the School’s future.
“The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s scholarship support makes it possible for us to recruit outstanding students who might otherwise choose another graduate program,” Crocker said. “We’re grateful for the confidence the Show has shown in our programs, our students, and the value of principled leadership in public service, which undergirds all we do.”
The Donor and Scholar Celebration was held in order to highlight some of the exciting initiatives taking place at the Bush School and to demonstrate how donor’s investments are instrumental to student and faculty success. Donors were able to meet both current and former students from the Bush School and hear first-hand how President Bush’s legacy of public service continues through the work of the School, which celebrates its twentieth anniversary next year.
In addition to recognition of donors and faculty members, two outstanding alumni were also honored at the event—Matt Lamon, ’07, and Nasir Andisha, ’09. Lamon currently serves as chief of staff in the Texas House of Representatives, where he directs his representative’s legislative and outreach efforts and manages office administration, budget, and staffing. After graduating from the Bush School in 2007, Lamon worked in public sector consulting in Washington, DC, where he assisted with projects for the US Department of Defense and the US Department of Homeland Security, among others.
Only two years after graduating from the Bush School of Government and Public Service, Nasir Andisha was named ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the Commonwealth of Australia, New Zealand, and the Republic of Fiji, continuing a promising career in international diplomacy. Prior to joining the Bush School, Andisha already had a strong background in international affairs, having served as chief of staff for the deputy foreign minister of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, taught international relations and principles of economics at the Institute of Diplomacy of the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and served as a field officer with the International Red Cross.
Derek Dictson ‘00, director of development at the Bush School, said the event provided a great opportunity for donors to see the impact of their commitment to the Bush School and for recipients of scholarships provided through donations to express their gratitude to donors.
“As a graduate of the Bush School, I know how grateful our students are for the financial support they receive and the high quality educational experience our school offers,” said Dictson. “This support allows our students to graduate with minimal debt as they seek public service careers, and it allows the Bush School to recruit and retain outstanding educators and practitioners to join our faculty. The Donor and Scholar Celebration was a wonderful opportunity for Bush School students and faculty to personally meet and thank the generous donors who support them, and for our donors to see how their investments have made a tremendous impact at the Bush School and around the world as we approach our twentieth anniversary.”