A. O. Smith Corporation announces 2015 merit scholarship recipients


Milwaukee, Wis.—A. O. Smith Corporation today announced the recipients of company-sponsored merit scholarships. The 25 recipients are students in the United States, China, Mexico, and the Netherlands.

The recipients, sons or daughters of A. O. Smith Corporation employees, were selected based on their academic record, participation in school and community activities, work experience, and honors. 

The 2015 recipients are:

  • Yun Cao of Nanjing, China, the son of Cao Hejun and Xing Biping.  Cao is a first-year student at Nanjing University;
  • Olivia Corbitt of Ashland City, Tenn., the daughter of Mark and Tammy Corbitt.  Olivia Corbitt is a freshman at Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, Tenn.;
  • Andrew Dean of Columbia, Tenn., the son of Chuck and Tracey Dean.  Andrew Dean is a freshman at Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Va.;
  • Chenyang Feng of Shanghai, China, the daughter of Shiming Feng and Julan Xiao.  Feng is a third-year student at Huzhou University, Huzhou, China;
  • Leya Franklin of Smyrna, Tenn., the daughter of Sally and La’Mar Franklin.  Leya Franklin is a freshman at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville;
  • Lauren Gierla of Hendersonville, Tenn., the daughter of Mark and Christine Gierla.  Lauren Gierla is a freshman at Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio;
  • Melanie Glenn of Johnson City, Tenn., the daughter of Dawn and Porter Bible.  Glenn is a freshman at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville;
  • Blake Heffner of Santa Ana, Calif., the son of Marc Heffner and Bethany Bovio.  Heffner is a freshman at the University of California-Santa Barbara;
  • Nathaniel Krakauer of Brookfield, Wis., the son of Bruce and Betsy Krakauer.  Nathaniel Krakakauer is a freshman at the University of Wisconsin-Madison;
  • Xintong Li of Tangshan, China, the daughter of Lihui Shen and Tao Li.  Xintong Li is a second-year student at YanShan University, Qinhuangdau City, China;
  • Rachael Manners of Chapel Hill, Tenn., the daughter of Phillip and Carla Manners.  Rachael Manners is a fifth-year student at Tennessee State University in Nashville;
  • Emily Matney of Bristol, Tenn., the daughter of David and Stephanie Matney.  Emily Matney is a freshman at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville;
  • Evan McDow of Albemarle, N.C., the son of Carl and Dana McDow.  Evan McDow is a freshman at Clemson University, Clemson, S.C.;
  • De’Ahara Merriweather of Clarksville, Tenn., the daughter of Celestino and Yesmeinda Martinez.  Merriweather is a sophomore at the University of Memphis, Memphis, Tenn.;
  • Alfredo Mora of Juarez, Mexico, the son of Alfredo Mora Flores and Marisela Noves Olivos.  Mora is a third-year student at the University of Texas-El Paso;
  • Christopher Pfaff of Lebanon, Tenn., the son of Ken and Alesha Pfaff.  Christopher Pfaff is a freshman at Belmont University, Nashville, Tenn.;
  • Sierra Potts of Cumberland Furnace, Tenn., the daughter of Paul and Tammy Potts.  Sierra Potts is a fourth-year student at Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, Tenn.;
  • Xiaoyu Qu of Dalian, China, the daughter of Changping Guo and Yunhe Qu.  Xiaoyu Qu is a first-year student at Northeastern University, Shenyang, Liaoning;
  • Nicholas Sewell of Kingsport, Tenn., the son of Mark and Julie Sewell.  Nicholas Sewell is a freshman at Milligan College, Milligan, Tenn.;
  • Victoria Slifka of Antioch, Tenn., the daughter of Samuel and Sharon DeBoer Slifka.  Victoria Slifka is a freshman at Coastal Carolina University, Conway, S.C.;
  • Tianminzi Song of Xiamen, China, the daughter of Chunmin Song and Yanli Wang.  Song is a third-year student at Hunan University, Changsha, China;
  • Daniel Ernesto Morales Tellez, the son of Ernesto Morales Ruiz and Lorena Tellez Hernandez.  Tellez is a second-year student at the Universidad Tecnologica de Ciudad Juarez;
  • Dennis Verkooijen of Aalst-Waaire, the Netherlands, the son of Ilona Sanders.  Verkooijen is a first-year student at Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Eindhoven, the Netherlands;
  • Yesica Segura Villa of Juarez, Mexico, the daughter of Raul Segura Corral and Sandra Eleng Villa Alvarado.  Villa is a second-year student at the Universidad Autonoma de Ciudad Juarez; and
  • Mengjie Wu of Nanjing China, the daughter of ChunBin Wu and Qinglan Li.  Wu is a third-year student at Jinan University, Jinan, China.

The A. O. Smith Merit Scholarship program is open to the children of employees in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Europe, China and India. To be considered, the student must be a graduating high school senior or currently enrolled in an undergraduate college or vocational school degree program. Scholarships help cover a portion of the tuition costs at an accredited two-year or four-year college or vocational technical school of the student's choice.

The company awards scholarships annually, which may be renewed for up to three additional years or until the recipient earns a bachelor's degree. The A. O. Smith Scholarship program is administered by Scholarship Management Services, a program of ScholarshipAmerica ® of St. Peter, Minn.