This scholarship was created in loving memory of Ryan J. Candice; the best friend anyone could ask for.
Ryan was one of the most warm-hearted, welcoming guys. His inclusiveness made him immensely popular on campus, and his kindness made you feel lucky to call him a friend. He was the life of the party; everyone's best friend. As an international business major at the University of Missouri, he was smart, well respected, and determined. He had an incredibly bright future ahead of him. He was the last person anyone would expect to die by suicide.
On June 19, 2014 Ryan died by suicide, creating a ripple effect that is still felt to this day. After Ryan passed, his close friends came together and decided to turn the tragedy into inspiration. They founded Project Wake Up with the aim of eradicating the stigma surrounding mental illness that keeps so many from reaching out for the help they desperately need.
Mental health social workers are among the help someone in a crisis situation desperately needs. We are incredibly grateful that future scholarship recipients have decided to take on this incredibly challenging—but incredibly important—profession. We hope that this scholarship ends up helping students who intend to devote their careers to providing aid for the mentally ill and those in crisis situations in Missouri. We hope that this scholarship plays a small role in their education and development, and in turn, someday saves a life. Thank you for keeping Ryan’s memory alive through your work.
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