By Mike Scott
“I figured out pretty quickly that factory work wasn’t what I was cut out for,” said Mark McAndrew, a Kahoka native and graduate of CCR-1 High School and the University of Missouri. “It’s nice that I can leave a legacy to remember my mother and father.”
That legacy was a $1.4 million dollar gift Mizzou’s Flagship Scholars Program, which is designed to provide a full-ride scholarship to one student from every county every year. McAndrew’s gift created the Jack and Ladene McAndrew Flagship Scholarship, in honor of his parents, who did not have the opportunity to attend college.
The gift, and the first scholarship recipient, were announced on Thursday afternoon at the Clark County R-1 High School commons.
“It’s the first fully-funded Flagship Scholars program for a Missouri county,” said Dr. Brian Foster, Provost at the University of Missouri. “One scholarship can be awarded every year in perpetuity.”
Flagship scholars are ambassadors for education and MU, in both their families and communities. Recipients will spend at least 20 hours per year in their home communities promoting education and college attendance.
“I am extremely proud of Mark and Stephanie, and what they’ve been able to do here today,” said Mark’s father, Jack McAndrew. “I know Clark County has a need for this, and it’s God’s will to make it happen.”
The first recipient of the Jack and Ladene McAndrew Flagship Scholarship is Dena Eddleman of Kahoka. Eddleman is a senior at Mizzou, majoring in hotel and restaurant management. Her parents are Robert and Linda Eddleman. Dena is a member of the Little Sisters of the Pearls and Rubies, participates in community food drives and highway cleanup, and works at Cracker Barrel in Columbia.
“This is really a huge milestone in my life, Eddleman told the crowd of about 125 gathered for the scholarship announcement.
“You and your dad both are so incredibly generous,” she said to McAndrew.
“Growing up in this little community has been the greatest experience of my life. I want to make everybody proud in Clark County, and make them realize this is a great place.”
McAndrew is the chairman and CEO of Torchmark Corp., of Dallas, Texas.
“I’ve been very fortunate with my life, McAndrew said.