Cheryl Sosnik graduated from UNCG in 1974, majoring in child development and family relations. She loved her time on campus and was known for having a “passion for people,” cultivating relationships as house president of Coit Hall and as student government vice-president her senior year. Even after she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis the summer following graduation, Sosnik maintained her positive attitude, advocating for those with physical challenges. Sosnik courageously battled MS and was elected alumni class president for the Class of 1974, leading in that position until her death in 1997.
Ciara Gazaway is a recipient of the Cheryl Sosnik Scholarship, which was established in Sosnik’s honor with gifts from family and friends. The scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies, who exemplifies Sosnik’s “leadership, enthusiasm, school spirit, and civic-mindedness.” Gazaway’s own leadership and communication skills reflect Sosnik’s dynamic involvement at UNCG.
It is hard to imagine Ciara Gazaway as anything other than confident and accomplished. This 2017-18 Spartan of Promise, homecoming court nominee, peer academic leader, University Marshal, and first-year assistant in the Office of New Student Transitions and First Year Experience is a senior, majoring in human development and family studies with a minor in sociology. Gazaway describes the encouragement she found at UNCG:
“My UNCG journey thus far has been a compilation of people seeing potential in me that I couldn’t see myself. These are people like professors, friends, supervisors, faculty, staff, and alumni! The influence these people have made has helped me find my passion and future career, aided in my academic and professional success, and supported my decision to further my education after graduation. I plan to go to graduate school for student affairs in higher education so I can help future students see their potential just like some did for me. Receiving the Cheryl Sosnik Scholarship was one of the best endings to my junior year! It highlighted my involvement, academic success, and leadership and showed me that hard work does pay off! I am forever grateful and have been able to save money that can now go to graduate school applications, tuition, and other expenses!”
Sosnik’s positive energy is evident in Gazaway’s ardent appreciation. Both women studied in the School of Health and Human Sciences, serving as courageous communicators and leaders, and reaching out to support other students. Gazaway honors Sosnik’s legacy in the most significant way possible: her passion for people.
Story by Zoe Dillard, Donor Relations
Endowments provide donors with opportunities to create living legacies and touch the lives of future generations.