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Scholarship endowed by family of Carolina Enegren helps Theresa Wolff experience college more fully

Theresa Wolff

Visitors to the Rhatigan Student Center who enter through the south doors can’t miss the giant sculpture modeled after Wichita’s “Keeper of the Plains” statue. Theresa Wolff’s design for painting the sculpture was selected by WSU officials from a field of contenders. She incorporated WSU elements such as the “Millipede” sculpture and the campus water tower.

Theresa Wolff is getting the most she can out of her college experience at Wichita State University — by leaving it.

Wolff, 21, is part of a growing trend nationally as college students recognize they need to expand their cultural literacy in an increasingly globalized world. This month, she will embark on a year of study abroad at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.

“I always knew that I wanted to immerse myself in a different culture,” says Wolff, a double major in studio art and biology. “Studying abroad gives me a chance to do that while going to school and learning what my future holds.”

Here’s a closer look at the senior from Wichita:

Paying for college:
Wolff expects to graduate with little debt, in part because of the help she received from the Carolina Enegren Scholarship in Fine Arts. The scholarship, the largest in the studio arts program, was established by the family of Carolina Enegren in 2010 to honor her memory following her death at the age of 31. “The scholarship has helped make it possible for me to afford other things that are part of college, like living on campus and studying abroad,” says Wolff, who also worked part-time and received financial help from her parents. “I find it remarkable that people are willing to support students like me who want to make it as an artist.”

Choosing WSU:
Wolff was impressed by Wichita State’s art program and also felt WSU would be more affordable than some other schools.


Career aspirations:
Wolff hopes someday to work in a museum designing and creating displays and exhibits. “I’ve never liked the idea of an office job, sitting at a desk all day. I want to do something where I use my hands.” She also intends to pursue her passion for painting and drawing, with the hope of selling her work one day.

Carolina Enegren is shown here with her sons, PJ and Nico, in 2009. Her husband, Paul Enegren, and Paul’s parents, Phil Enegren and Linda Weir-Enegren, endowed a scholarship in Carolina’s name to support talented students in Wichita State’s studio arts program.

Why she also is majoring in biology:
“I like animals and I want to know more about how the world works,” Wolff says. Biology would be useful for someone working in a natural history museum, she notes.

Learn more about Carolina and view one of her art pieces of her children in this Horizon story Carolina Enegren's Artwork .



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