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Elizabeth Jones, an engineering student at the University of West Florida and a military veteran, is one of only eight students in the United States to receive the Google Student Veterans of America Scholarship of $10,000 for the 2016-17 academic year. As part of its commitment to military veterans, the global technology leader partnered with Student Veterans of America to establish the highly competitive national scholarship program.

“Elizabeth was the perfect candidate for this scholarship, and I had a strong feeling that she would be selected when I wrote a recommendation for her,” said Dr. Mohamed Khabou, chair of the UWF engineering department. “She does not shy away from challenges and is willing to work hard to tackle any obstacles that come between her and her goals.”

Khabou notes that Jones is a very serious, disciplined and hardworking engineering student, whose leadership skills were showcased during her service as president of the student chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers – where she advanced the level and frequency of technical workshops and field trips for her peers.

A veteran of the Marine Corps, Jones calls serving in the military one of the best and most important decisions of her life.

“During my service, I learned vital skills in leadership, communication and teamwork, among others, which continue to be applicable in my personal and professional life,” she said. “Being a military veteran is a part of who I am as a person, and I am both proud of and grateful for that.”

Jones set herself apart through her focus on renewable power and energy sources, as well as her participation in student organizations including the UWF student branch of the IEEE, the UWF Mathematics Association and the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi Chapter 146.

“Being an active student and looking for ways to improve our world, from my perspective, match the values of Google and the Student Veterans of America,” Jones said. “I feel as though I have been entrusted with an opportunity to become more, or better, than perhaps I might have been; I must strive to earn this scholarship by having a positive, professional impact on the world through my degree field.”

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