Tyler Newsom has pretty much always had a plan. That shouldn’t surprise anyone. Planning is in his blood. Tyler is the winner of the first-ever DRI Foundation Scholarship Award. He is also the son of DRI International MBCP David Newsom, who is Executive Director of Technology and Data Services for MSCI.
The scholarship, made possible by the generosity of DRI International and DRI Canada, was open to the children of DRI-certified professionals in the U.S. and Canada. In addition to providing information about academic performance and volunteer activities, scholarship applicants were asked to write an essay on community preparedness.
“Tyler’s essay was phenomenal,” said DRI President Al Berman. “He didn’t just demonstrate an understanding of preparedness, he proposed a program of how to incorporate preparedness education and training into schools from kindergarten all the way through high school. It’s tremendous, and I encourage everyone to read it.”
“We believe that educating our youth about the importance of disaster preparedness today is key to guaranteeing a safer and more responsible community in the future,” said DRI Foundation Chair AnneMarie Staley. “It was inspiring to see the quality of so many remarkable and talented applicants who did an excellent job writing and explaining their point of view about preparedness. It is a major source of pride and inspiration for our organization to be able to award this scholarship each year.”
Tyler says he took a practical, how-to approach to the essay because that’s how he approaches life. “When I went into high school, I had a plan. I knew what my goals were and that I was heading to college and what I needed to accomplish. I stuck with that plan.”
His plan paid off. Tyler, of Nolensville, TN, recently graduated from Ravenwood High School with a 4.0 GPA and will attend the University of Tennessee at Knoxville where he will study engineering in the honors program.
As for his father, he is “very proud of Tyler and very grateful to DRI.”
According to David, Tyler was exposed business continuity and preparedness for a great deal of his childhood. “We’ve been very fortunate over the years that I had the opportunity to work from home,” David said. “I was doing a lot of business continuity and DR, and there were a lot of horrible things happening around the world. I was managing our response to those. Tyler saw some of that, and I was able to explain what I do and why it’s important in that context. He has always been right alongside me.”
“I think what my dad does is cool,” said Tyler. “He brings home pictures and stuff and tells us about all the fail-safes and precautions. It’s neat.”
Tyler says one of the best parts of the DRI scholarship process was how he found out he’d won. “My dad came home from his business trip and took us out to a sushi dinner. I thought it was just for my sister’s birthday, and then he told me we also were celebrating me winning the scholarship. I was so surprised. It was awesome!”
We think Tyler is pretty awesome too, and we encourage you to read his winning essay HERE.
Many thanks to the 2015 Judges:
Carol L. Hodnett
United Way Vice President
Community Impact and Martin Volunteers
Jim Noble, Vice President Colgate
Global Risk Manager – Retired