Thailer Buari, a 21-year-old junior finance major from Columbus, is the recipient of the 2010 Antonio Johnson Scholarship award. The scholarship was announced at the “Dare to Dream, Strive to Succeed” 34th annual Antonio Johnson Scholarship Banquet held April 16 at the University.
Buari receives a full year of tuition, room and board, and a book stipend. Buari was selected from among several finalists for 2010 including Michele Brockington, Amanda Tooley and nursing major Alexis Ponder of Dayton, who was the runner-up for this year’s award. She receives a $10,000 scholarship from Macy’s Credit and Customer Services.
The keynote speaker for the evening was Anthony Anderson, a Xavier alumnus who is a music producer and manager, educator, researcher, and PhD candidate at the University of Delaware in Newark. Anderson is credited with being one of the foremost thinkers and researchers on Hip-Hop pedagogy, an educational theory that involves exploring the educational and entrepreneurial possibilities of Hip-Hop culture.
Buari, the son of Shamisdeen and Teari Buari, is involved in many groups on campus including United4Change XU, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Xavier African Students Association, Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and Gentlemen Organized for Achievement and Leadership (G.O.A.L.).
The Antonio Johnson scholarship is given annually to an African-American junior demonstrating academic excellence, outstanding leadership, involvement and service. It covers one year’s tuition, including a book stipend and room and board. It is given in memory of Antonio Johnson, an African-American student who pioneered social change and justice at Xavier. Johnson, who died at age 22 while a Xavier student, organized activities for Black Awareness Month in February 1976, the year of his death. He was an urban studies major and president of the Black Student Association.
Other awards presented were:
• Outstanding Freshman Award to Roderick Curry of Westland, Mich., majoring in electronic media.
• Outstanding Sophomore Award to Arzell West-Estell of Toledo, majoring in chemical science with a minor in natural sciences.
• Outstanding Senior Award to Leon Hampton of New York, majoring in criminal justice.
• Antonio Johnson Leadership Award to Aaron Marble of Cincinnati, a senior majoring in human resources with a theology minor.
• Outstanding Service Award to Elise Harris of Perrysburg, Ohio, a senior majoring in psychology.
• Benjamin J. Allen Alumni Award to Vonnya Thomas of Cincinnati, a 2004 graduate of Xavier who is the University cashier.