In memory of Lucas Ransom, a UCSB junior killed by a shark off Surf Beach in October 2010, two $4,000 scholarships were awarded to rising seniors James Stanfill and John Scott last week. The Lucas Ransom Memorial Scholarships are funded by the Ransom family, and the June 15 ceremony was attended by them and several of the recipients’ friends.
“This is so meaningful and poignant because Lucas would have been graduating, but, also, this is a celebration,” Candace Ransom, Lucas’s mother, said in a prepared statement. “The dream that Lucas had to help others is in the hearts and minds of these students, and they will have the opportunity to continue on where Lucas didn’t get to. I feel so proud and honored to see this scholarship finally come through.”
Interestingly, Stanfill is a former water polo player and lifeguard, as was Ransom. Participation in undergraduate research has influenced his goals of attending graduate school in the pharmaceutical field. Ultimately, Stanfill intends to combine these skills and his passion for teaching, which he has already practiced: part of his duties as co-president of UCSB’s Chemistry Club includes community outreach and encouraging youth to pursue science as a career path.
After working in construction and retail, Scott enrolled in Shasta College and found a passion for math and science. He graduated with an associate’s degree in 2010 and transferred to UCSB. Simultaneously supporting himself and attending school, he has experience in undergraduate research bettering MRI technology; he plans to graduate with a bachelor of science degree. Scott, like Stanfill, intends to attend graduate school and become a teacher.
“Lucas just couldn’t believe he was accepted here, and that he was going to such an incredible school that he loved so dearly,” Candace said in her statement. “He never thought he could afford to go here, so giving others that opportunity is really important.”