STEM Scholarship Spotlight: Minnich Oakley

Hometown: Bristol, TN
Major: Chemical/Nuclear Engineering
University: University of Tennessee-Chattanooga

From the beginning of her high school, our STEM scholarship winner, Minnich Oakley always found STEM based classes to be the most intriguing. Since then, she has known that she wants to continue this path and pursue a career in Nuclear Engineering.

“I took an honors chemistry class and I really enjoyed learning about it.… so, I researched a lot of videos and nuclear topics, and … I talked to my friends about it and they were like “why are you talking to us about nuclear engineering?! But it just really grabbed my attention and I really like it.”

The moments that Minnich treasures the most from her school career, were the ones where she was able to see the results of her hard work and dedication. Minnich served as editor of her high school’s yearbook, and she will never forget how she felt the day the yearbook team received the final copy of the yearbook. It was such a special moment because the team finally saw their vision come to life.

“I just feel proud. I feel excited. I just want to be able to make a difference and I want to be able to be happy while I’m doing it too.”

Minnich’s passion, love of the sciences, and determination permeated throughout her school career and she is proud to say that she was the valedictorian of her graduating class and she was commended as Graduate of Highest Distinction.