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The McLendon Minority Postgraduate Scholarship winners each receive a $10,000 grant to be used towards postgraduate studies in athletics administration.
Through the support of the Fiesta Bowl’s endowment commitment to the Foundation, a John McLendon Minority Postgraduate Scholarship is awarded each year to a student associated with an Arizona-based four-year institution.
Funding for the John McLendon Minority Postgraduate Scholarship has been provided in part by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA); the Cleveland Cavaliers; Major League Baseball (MLB); the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC); the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA); the National Basketball Association (NBA); the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA); Capital One; and Sears, Roebuck and Co.
The John McLendon Minority Postgraduate Scholarship Program has awarded over 100 scholarships, totaling over $1 million.
2022 McLendon Scholars
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Camarillo earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from Concordia University Chicago in...
Camarillo earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from Concordia University Chicago in May 2013. After receiving her undergraduate degree, Camarillo gained experience in the non-profit sector, including health, housing and education verticals. For three years she served as a high school public policy and Spanish educator in Chicago. She is currently working as a graduate assistant and director of sponsorship for the McCormack Sport Leaders Forum at the University of Massachusetts Amherst Isenberg School of Management, and is expected to graduate with a dual master of business administration and master of science in 2023.
New York University
Kimokoti completed a bachelor of arts degree in biology in 2015 from Brown University, where...
Kimokoti completed a bachelor of arts degree in biology in 2015 from Brown University, where she was a recipient of the Derek Canfield Barker Prize for Leadership and Community Service. Starting as a junior, she played rugby for the Kenya National Women’s Rugby Team. In December 2022, Kimokoti received a master’s degree in sports business from New York University (NYU). Her professional goal is to launch a high-impact global career in the sports industry, to work with teams, leagues, and federations in Africa to improve financial sustainability by establishing viable operating models.
University of South Carolina- Columbia
Marders-Nichols earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration management from the University of...
Marders-Nichols earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration management from the University of Mount Olive in May 2020, where she was a women’s basketball student-athlete and a Conference Carolinas All-Academic honoree. She also served as a marketing intern in the Tillman School of Business during her time at Mount Olive. Marders-Nichols currently works as a graduate assistant in student-athlete development at the University of South Carolina Upstate. She is also pursuing a master of sport entertainment management degree from the University of South Carolina, expected to be completed in May 2023.
University of Tennessee
Neal received a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Tennessee...
Neal received a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Tennessee (UT) in May 2019, where she was captain of both the women’s soccer and women’s track and field teams. She was also a representative for her teams in the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and served as Community Service Co-Chair within SAAC. During her undergraduate career, Neal gained experience working as a marketing and sponsorship intern with the Chicago Red Stars. She has played professional soccer overseas in France since December 2019, and plans to pursue a master’s degree in sport business at Temple University.
University of North Carolina Greensboro
Redfearn completed a bachelor’s degree in sport management administration with a minor in deaf studies...
Redfearn completed a bachelor’s degree in sport management administration with a minor in deaf studies at Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) in May 2021. While at WSSU, Redfearn served as a research assistant, a position in which she collected and analyzed data from surveys, focus groups, and health screenings to obtain information on chronic disease risk factors, fitness motivation, and fatigue through the Weight Matters Program at WSSU. She also gained experience as a sports intern at the BOND Center for Excellence and the CIAA Basketball Tournament. She is currently enrolled at UNC Greensboro and is pursuing a master’s degree in community and therapeutic recreation management with an expected graduation date of May 2023.
University of Louisville
Smiley earned a bachelor of science degree in sport administration and a minor in marketing...
Smiley earned a bachelor of science degree in sport administration and a minor in marketing from the University of Louisville in May 2022. During his time as an undergraduate, he worked as a youth development group leader at the Central Kentucky YMCA and the YMCA of Greater Louisville, assisting the site director in implementing developmentally appropriate curriculum that created a positive, nurturing environment. He also spent time interning with the University of Louisville athletics marketing department and the Bellarmine University basketball program. Smiley plans to pursue an advanced degree in sport business management at UCF.
Arizona State University
Smith received a bachelor of arts degree in legal studies with a minor in criminal...
Smith received a bachelor of arts degree in legal studies with a minor in criminal justice and African American studies from the University of Illinois Springfield (UIS) in 2021, where she was a member of the women’s basketball team. Since 2017, she has served as a U.S. Army Reserve Platoon Leader, honing transferrable critical thinking skills and making sound leadership decisions in high pressure environments. After her time at UIS, Smith worked as an athletics department internal operations and compliance intern at Saint Louis University. She plans to pursue a master’s degree in sports law and business from The Allan “Bud” Selig Sports Law and Business program at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University with an anticipated graduation date of May 2024.
Southern Methodist University
Wright graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of science in communication (sports media) from...
Wright graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of science in communication (sports media) from Mississippi College (MC) in 2021, where he was a student-athlete on the football team and an all-conference performer on the men’s track and field team. At MC, he was the first African American student in the history of the institution to be named vice president of the Student Government Association (SGA), a position he held for two terms. After graduation, Wright served as a development intern with USA Football (USAF), assisting the organization’s Education Team with the preparation of various conferences curated for a variety of stakeholders. Wright is currently pursuing a master of science in sport management at Southern Methodist University (SMU) where he serves as the athletics department’s marketing intern, and is expected to graduate in August 2023.