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Dwyane Wade befriends scholarship winners

By: Liz McGovern

Johnson (left), Wade and Hamilton (right)

"I was terrified to come to Marquette," Tamara Johnson says. "I didn't know anyone, but my first day was amazing."

Tamara Johnson, a Boys & Girls Clubs of America scholarship winner and a senior in the J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication, was nervous to start college four years ago. The Boys & Girls Clubs of America helped ease the transition.

Marquette established a partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America for incoming freshmen that began in the fall of 2010. Full-tuition scholarships were given to as many as three students who have received a Youth of the Year award. This award is presented to students who have overcome obstacles and made significant contributions to their local and regional communities.

Amaya Hamilton and Johnson are the first group of scholarship winners and are now seniors preparing for graduation. They are now seniors preparing for graduation. They reflect on their journey with Marquette, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and an unlikely friendshipówith Dwyane Wade.

The students first met Wade their freshman year during their first day of classes and he gave them a tour of campus. They ate lunch and hung out for several hours. Since then, Wade has returned to Milwaukee every year to meet with the scholarship winners and catch up.

When she met Wade, Johnson says she was surprised by how nice and down to earth he was. She said he's also very generousóWade sent the scholarship winners care packages last year during finals week.

Hamilton, another scholarship winner and senior in the Helen Way Klinger College of Arts and Sciences, says that it's been exciting to discuss how their lives have changed every year. Wade still remembers details about their lives and continues to support them.

Hamilton will attend the Eastern Michigan University for graduate school, pursuing a master's of arts degree in higher education/student affairs. After graduation, Johnson will begin law school at Marquette.

Yousif Maizy and Nuri Navarro are also Youth of the Year scholarship winners. Maizy is a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences and Navarro is a sophomore in the College of Communication.


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