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MSU Foundation announces Burke-Messer Memorial Scholarship Endowment

The MSU Foundation has announced the establishment of the Burke-Messer Memorial Scholarship Endowment. This endowment, made possible by individual contributions and an estate gift commitment, provides scholarship support to full-time incoming first-year students from Eastern Kentucky, with preference given to female students.   

Created by two-time MSU graduate Dr. N. Peggy Burke (Class of 1956, 1957), the scholarship is named after her parents to recognize the privately supported scholarships that made her college education possible.   

"Without the financial support I received, I would have never been able to go to college myself," she said. "I want to ‘pay it forward’ by enabling future students to achieve their educational dreams."  

Following her graduation from MSU, Burke went on to earn a Ph.D. in Physical Education. She joined the University of Iowa faculty in health and sports studies and eventually became chair of the department. She was a passionate advocate of women in sports throughout her career, receiving awards for her efforts that included the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators Lifetime Achievement Award. These accomplishments led to her induction into the MSU Alumni Hall of Fame in 1976.   

Dr. Burke has remained a loyal supporter of MSU for many decades. This scholarship commitment ensures her continued support for generations to come. When fully funded, the Burke-Messer Memorial Scholarship Endowment will provide a $10,000 renewable scholarship to an MSU student.   

For more information on this scholarship, or to establish your own, contact MSU's Office of Alumni Relations and Development at 606-783-2033, email or visit