Awarded to only 50 students each year, the Udall Scholarship is a national scholarship for college students committed to careers related to the environment, tribal public policy or Native American health care. Scholars are awarded up to $5,000. Recipients of the scholarship will be announced March 28.
With 22 Udall scholars, Kansas State University ranks fifth among all the four-year colleges and universities in the nation for total awardees since the scholarship program began in 1996. Udall nominees must have at least one full year of undergraduate study remaining to be eligible for the scholarship.
Birzer, a senior in apparel marketing, is a member of Sigma Kappa sorority, Students for Environmental Action and Kappa Omicron Nu family and consumer sciences honorary. Her awards, honors and scholarships include the Goss Discovery Scholarship, Kansas Association for Family and Consumer Sciences K-State Scholarship and the Sigma Kappa Outstanding Senior award. In addition, she is part of the university’s honors program and received university honors for the fall 2010, spring 2011 and fall 2012 semesters.
Birzer has served as president of Study Abroad Mentors, a peer adviser for the university’s study abroad office, homecoming float co-chair for Sigma Kappa and coordinator for the 2010 Fair Trade Fashion Show. She has volunteered for Boys and Girls Club and is a costume designer for Broadway at Baker, a musical theater summer camp.
If awarded the Udall scholarship, Birzer would like to get her master’s in environmental science or textile futures and help the apparel industry become more sustainable by raising awareness regarding clothing’s environmental impacts.
A 2009 graduate of Ottawa High School, she is the daughter of Tony and Betty Birzer, Ottawa.